The organisers of the biggest travel and tourism expo in West Africa, AKWAABA African Travel Market has announced the expansion of the annual Jollof Rice war among West Africans which will now include other nations outside West Africa.
Akwaaba Started the #jollofricewar in 2017 among West African Countries in partnership with the Ghana Tourism Authority to help build a culinary identity for West Africa. It caught fire so much so that the match between Nigeria and Ghana is now termed the JollofRice Derby.
“Jollof Rice War” now in its 6th year will be open to other countries. There will be a rice cooking contest to introduce other rice flavours in Africa and a food exhibition for the participating countries.
This is aimed at exposing the rich African cuisine to travellers and deepening the people to people encounters in Africa. The instant success of the Jollofrice War and the popularity it has since gathered hints at a great future for African Food Culture.
The 19th Edition of the event will hold from 3rd to the 5th of September, 2023 at Eko Hotels Convention Centre, Lagos State, Nigeria. According to the Organiser – Mr Ikechi Uko, the annual event is back to its usual time of September after the move to November because of Covid-19 fallout in 2021 and 2022.
The 19th Edition will draw attendance from countries within and outside Africa. The African Travel Market has grown over the years to become the most important platform for marketing travel and tourism in West Africa and is among the top 5 tourism events in Africa.
Monday the 4th of September is the African Travel Technology Day showcasing the travel technologies driving tourism and travel in Africa. The prestigious Africa Travel Awards and its Africa Travel100 Awards will be on 4th of September.
In 2022, Akwaaba introduced the Medical Tourism Session and Pavilion based on the fallout of the Covid19 pandemic which placed health and wellness on the front burner.
Based on the attendance and response to the session, the Medical Tourism Pavilion will be enhanced in 2023 on Tuesday 5th September. There will also be an African Tourism Youth Bantaba to connect African Youth in Tourism in order to improve partnership to grow tourism in Africa.
In 2017, AKWAABA African Travel Market hosted the Africa Travel 100 Women Awards and this brought together for the first-time female travel professionals from all over Africa with over 250 people in attendance.
In 2018 it hosted the Africa Travel 100 Tour Operators and hosted the Africa Travel 100 Diaspora Global Awards in 2019. In 2022, it hosted the 2nd Edition of Africa Travel 100 Women Awards which brought together leading female airline pilots, tourism minister, hotel managers and leading operators in Africa.
Akwaaba has over the years hosted Former President of Nigeria- Olusegun Obasanjo; Former President Dawda Jawara of The Gambia; Former Secretary General of the Commonwealth Sir Emeka Anyaoku; Former Vice President of Nigeria Sir Alex Ekwueme, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Others are Hon. Sharon Palacio- the Mayor of Belmopan in Belize; Ms. Carol Hay – the former Director Caribbean Tourism Organization CTO UK; The Ambassadors of Ghana Senegal, Jamaica and the Trinidad and Tobago, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa; Fabien Anthony Co-founder Pan Africa Council; Alain St Ange, former Minister of Tourism Seychelles.
Dr Memunatu Pratt- Sierra Leone Tourism Minister, many ministers of Tourism from different African countries and some state Governors. Many Ambassadors and High Commissioners attend AKWAABA regularly.
Akwaaba Delegates have access and face to face discussions with many destinations and suppliers which includes over 300 travel professionals from Nigeria, West Africa and around Africa. Akwaaba is the premier travel market in West Africa “where Africa meets the World”. It is the largest gathering of travel professionals in West Africa.