By Eric Elezuo
The world of tourism is no longer an all comers affair. It is a professional terrain only reserved for the professionals and erudite minds who are potentially endowed to provide first class travel arrangements, and follow it up with the required attention needed for customers to enjoy the best of travelling and holidaying. One of such prolific organisations is 1860 Travels.
In this brief chat, the CEO, Mr. Francis Daodu, revealed the basics of most impressive journeys and why 1860 Travels is the company of choice. Excerpts:
Could you kindly introduce yourself?
My name is Francis Olusina Daodu. I am the Managing Director of 1860 Travels Limited. We are a travel management company, of course registered in Nigeria as a member of National Association of Nigerian Travel Agencies (NANTA) and International Air Transport Association (IATA). We’ve been in business for over five years and we started from ground zero, so to speak, because we started as a non-IATA agency. We have grown through the ranks in the industry.
Can you confidently say you have arrived?
Well, I will not say we have gotten to where we intend to but it’s our resolve to continue to give our best to travellers, both current and prospective customers, and all stakeholders. We will get there.
Did you dabble into the tourism industry or it came about as a passion?
It is pure passion. I did not dabble into the industry. It is passion for travels and more importantly, the fact that that there are a lot of tourism potentials in our country that drove me into the industry. Unfortunately, these are underdeveloped. I deliberately loined the industry to my quota in ensuring that travels and tourism as a business is developed within our country.
However, considering that our country is still growing and not fully developed, we have to look more at the outbound market. It is therefore, the passion to replicate the good things out there in Nigeria that is our driving force. In fact, we should be the best tourism destination in the world; we should be competing among the best destinations in the world. Unfortunately, this is where we have found ourselves, but, of course, we all will continue to put our efforts at ensuring that this is developed in Nigeria.
How does the fact that Nigeria has no national carrier affect your job as a travel agent, both within and out there?
Of course, it has a lot of effects. Firstly, it means that foreign airlines are the ones to determine the fate of our travellers. Whether we like it or not, there is a lot of foreign exchange involved and although the foreign airlines do employ our citizens, it really does not mean that a bulk of their revenue sits here in Nigeria. This is because they are in business and for them to continue to stay afloat, the revenue make must return to where it should go to – their home country. It’s quite unfortunate but that is the situation.
What are those attractive packages that 1860 Travels has today and intends to provide, that distinguishes it from other travel agencies?
One thing that is very peculiar which stands us out in the industry, despite the numerous travel agencies in Nigeria, is that we believe in the development of young people and that’s why we have young people all around us. You know, wherever there are young people a lot of fresh ideas flow. We believe a lot in the application of technology in ensuring that travels and tourism are best served to our market. So, we understand that wherever you have young people, you have technology and where you have 1860 Travels, you have the best of travel technology. More importantly, we are five years in the industry and we continue to grow and we also continue to apply several ingenuous ideas in ensuring that travels and tourism is best served in and within our markets.
What are the challenges that limit your productivity?
Well, as an SME, it is about the same challenges SMEs face in the country. It also takes me back to what I was saying about national carrier. If we had a national carrier or we had domestic airlines operating within the international space, it would be to our advantage first. Most recently, the Akwa Ibom State government launched their own airline fleet, which, whether we like it or not, will benefit benefit the citizens first. So, let us think about that is happening on the national stage – we will be the greatest beneficiaries. These foreign airlines don’t operate in Nigeria alone, so to an extent, they cannot be blamed because their hands are a bit tied. They are not just giving to us – they are giving back, first and foremost to their citizens, then secondarily, citizens of other countries where they operate and thirdly, general full support. And of course, you must know that every business is set out to make profit, and some of them have devoted a certain percentage in ensuring that they get some of these things done, under the CSR factor. So, it is our job and that of those in the media as well, to keep emphasizing the need for a national carrier. It goes a long way; it does not just controls fares in the market, you also have a lot more independent contractors and mostly Nigerians employed. Also, we cannot underestimate the need for more young people enjoying more CSR from such airlines.
Finally, where do you see 1860 Travels five years from now?
When we started, it was from ground zero, like I said, without any special support. We have been patient and visionary enough and hope that in the next five years, we would get to the global stage. 1860 Travels wants to play on a global stage, we don’t just want to be limited within the shores of Nigeria. We want to play and be seen as a big player on the global scene. And everything has been put in place to ensure that it happens. It is our desire and hope to take the gospel of 1860 Travels to other markets around the world.
Thank you very much for your time
Get Your Driver’s Licence, Odumosu Charges Motorists, Police Officers
The Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Command, CP Hakeem Odumosu, Thursday at FRSC Ojodu Driver’s licence centre reiterated that obtaining driver’s licence is a civic responsibility of all drivers plying on Lagos road.
He made this pronouncements after his driver’s licence physical capture, saying “Once you are above 18 years of age, it is expected that the person interested in driving must apply through accredited driving schools for their electronic driving school certificate which is a prequisite for applying for fresh driver’s licence. While applicants for renewal are expected to appear physically to be captured or through bypass. Any process devoid of this is fake, he stated”.
According to a statement signed by the Corps Public Education Officer, Route Commander Olabisi Sonusi, the CP also encouraged Officers of the Nigeria Police that drive to get their driver’s licence in order to serve as good example for other motorists.
The Sector Commander FRSC Lagos Sector Command Corps Commander Olusegun Ogungbemide who was impressed with the leadership quality displayed by the CP, personally handed over the temporary driver’s licence to him and promised that his permanent licence will get to him soonest.
He pleaded with other security agencies to emulate the exemplary style of the CP
Ogungbemide charged all motorists to always maintain safe speed and obey all traffic rules and regulations at all times as we enter the last quarter of the year.
Lagos CP Pays Security Assessment Visits to Police Formations
The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Odumosu, has on Wednesday paid a working visit various security formations of the Command including the Area ‘J’ Command Headquarters, Elemoro.
The Command’s PPRO, CSP Adekunle Ajisebutu said in a statement that the visit was to carry out security assessment with the sole aim of providing watertight security for investors and create an enabling environment in line with the Federal Government’s policy on ease of doing business in Nigeria.
The statement noted that other places the CP visited were the Akodo Police Division, Free Zone Police Station; Police Mobile Force, 49 Squadron, Epe; Ajah, Ilasan, Ogombo, and Maroko Divisions to assess the security needs of the Area ‘J’ Command, Elemoro and Ibeju Lekki area in view of the rapid development in the entire axis.
During the visit, the Commissioner of Police inspected the Stations’ armouries to ascertain that arms and ammunition were properly maintained; and cells to ensure that suspects were not unduly detained beyond the statutory period.
In continuation of his visit, the CP also inspected the Free Zone Police Station newly built by the management of the Lagos State Free Zone, Lekki, Lagos. The one-of-its-kind police station, equipped with modern facilities, was built in tandem with the philosophy of Community Policing aimed at bringing the police closer to the people.
The new station when commissioned would provide additional security for the Free Zone and its host community. It is expected that the robust security which the station as well as existing ones would provide, would serve as a safety assurance for foreign and local investors doing businesses in the area.
The Commissioner of Police who visited the place on the directive of the Inspector-General of Police, Alkali Baba Usman, psc(+), fdc, NPM, expressed satisfaction with the work done and hoped that the Inspector-General of Police would give approval for the commissioning of the facility in due course so that it would begin provision of services to the public as soon as possible.
The Commissioner of Police was warmly received and conducted round the new police station by the Manager, Lagos State Free Zone, Mr Gokil Rajan; At the Lekki Free Zone, Akodo where he also visited, he was received by the Managing Director and Deputy Managing Director, Lekki Free Zone Development Company, Messrs Xigong Huang and Adegboye Balogun.
NSCDC Vows to Investigate Alleged Involvement of Officer in Banditry, Maintains Zero Tolerance to Criminality
By Eric Elezuo
The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has vowed to investigate the alleged involvement of one of its officers in banditry as a supposed video which has gone viral is suggesting.
Speaking through a statement, the Corps’ Director of Public Relations, DCC Olusola Odumosu, noted that there’s a possibility that the culprit is telling lies as most criminals are fond of impersonating security personnel.
He added that the Corps is disciplined, and will not condone criminality from anyone, especially a staff.
Odumosu further promised that a thorough investigation will be conducted, and members of the public will be informed of the outcome.
Read the full details:
The attention of the management of the Nigera Security and Civil Defence Corps has been drawn to a video clip already gone viral in relation to one Abdullah Saidu, an acclaimed Civil Defence personnel arrested in connection with a group of armed bandits terrorizing some parts of Koton Karfe Local Government Area of Kogi state.
It is pertinent to point out that the Nigera Security and Civil Defence Corps is a Federal security agency saddled with the responsibility of protecting lives and property amongst others, hence, would not in anyway condone any saboteur of National Security or sponsors of criminalities.
Based on the aforementioned, the Corps wishes to inform the public that the purported video where the alleged suspect openly confessed to the crime did not in anyway give credence to or affirm his membership of the Corps as experience has shown that criminals are fond of impersonating security operatives in order to divert attention, subvert investigation or get away with the crime.
However, due to the high premium placed on integrity, discipline and professionalism by management of the Corps, an intelligence based team has been set up to carry out thorough investigation on the matter and check available records to confirm the authenticity of his claim. Thereafter, the general public shall be adequately briefed on subsequent findings
We wish to reiterate that the Corps will continue to discharge it’s statutory mandates without compromise but with humility and integrity, while also synergizing with other sister agencies in combating all forms of criminalities in the Nation.
DCC OLUSOLA ODUMOSU
DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
NSCDC NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS