Interim Manager of the Pikworo Slave Camp in Paga Nania in the Kassena-Nankana West District of the Upper East Region, Aaron Azumah, has said that the impact of the novel corona virus has affected patronage to the site.
Hitherto the pandemic, Mr. Azumah said patronage to the site was around 500 visitors per month; but has reduced drastically to less than 50 in a month; indicating a clear decline in revenue generation.
According to him, revenue gotten from the slave camp is use to maintain the site and part of it goes back to the community.
“The impact of the COVID-19 has melted down revenue drastically. We use to get about 500 tourists visiting here in a month but the figure has reduced drastically to less than 50. But as for the non-indigenes, it might even happen that 2 will not come in a month.” Mr Azumah lamented
With the easing of restriction to tourist sites, Mr. Azumah appealed to government through the Ministry of Tourism to rehabilitate the site to attract more tourists.
He further appealed to government to rehabilitate the major roads leading to the Pikworo Slave Camp and other tourist sites to help boost domestic tourism.
“Because of that, most people find it difficult traveling from far distance like Accra which is about 16 hours to the Upper East region under the bad nature of our roads. Unfortunately, there is no flight direct from Accra to the Upper East region.” He said to A1 Radio’s Joshua Asaah.
The Upper East Regional Director of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Henry Yeledour, when contacted, said his outfit had provided COVID-19 logistics to help prevent the spread of coronavirus at the various tourist sites in the region.
“We are appealing to those of us around and out of the region, that, the restrictions have been eased and it is now permissible for you to visit the tourist sites. So, we are sure that, in the coming months, the visitor numbers to this particular site and to other sites in the region will pick up.”
Mr. Yeledour said plans are underway to support the Pikworo Slave Camp with facilities such as; Visitors’ Information Office, washrooms as well as fence wall to avert further discouragement to the site.
According to history, The Pikworo Slave Camp which occupies a 1km square size, was established in 1704 and abolished in 1845.
The ancient tourist site is one of the well-known slave camps in Ghana; it comprises a natural source of water, a rock which produces different rhythm for the entertainment of the then slaves to reduce emotional stress.
Other interesting areas of the site include a watchtower, cemetery and the punishment rock; where ‘recalcitrant slaves’ were punished to deter their colleagues.
Source: A1Radioonline.com|101.1MHZ|Joshua Asaah/Ghana