Residents of Rubavu district have been urged to play a major role in promoting tourism activities by welcoming tourists, maintain tourist attractions sites and avoiding the habit of begging visitors.
Jean Marie Vianney Ruhamanya, the district official in charge of cooperatives and tourism, says that the district has come up with a tourism promotion agenda for 2013 and there is need to have the contribution of residents in order to achieve it.
The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) has designated Rubavu district as one of the priority areas of tourism zones because of its vast tourist attractions. The district has over 30 sites which range from historical sites, natural forests, lakes and rivers, mountains among others.
Ruhamanya said that residents must maintain the general cleanliness of the designated sites, and give a warm welcome to tourists who visit the historical, and show a sign of self respect which will encourage more tourists to visit and thus more foreign earnings through the sector.
To the contrary, most residents living around these sites, in Rubavu district expressed ignorance of the value of tourist sites but were supportive of the district initiative.
Tourism is the largest foreign exchange earner in Rwanda’s economy. From January 2012, the sector brought in US$232million from US$204millions- making an increment of US$28million.
In his state of the nation address in 2012, President Paul Kagame also called Rwandans to promote the sector so as to give a good image of the country and encourage more tourists to visit the country as one of the most favorable tourist destinations in Africa.