The president, Nana Akufo-Addo says government is in the process of designing a unique model of intervention to be applied to the hospitality industry following the outbreak of COVID 19.
According to the President, government’s intervention is more crucial in these times especially in the wake of challenges such as the low patronage of hotels and tourism sites.
Speaking at a meeting with players in the hospitality industry at the Jubilee House on Tuesday, Nana Akufo-Addo reiterated his administration’s commitment to ensure the survival of the hospitality industry in the face of the difficulties presented by the COVID-19.
“I think it is well understood that the hospitality sectors has been one of the hardest hit. Everybody has been very badly hit by this pandemic. We as a government have to have a clearer understanding of where we have and then, of course, to see to what extent our intervention can help redress the situation,” he said.
In April, the Ghana Hotels Association urged the government to support the payment of staff of its members who have been asked to stay home due to low patronage of their facilities.
Give us support
The President of the Ghana Hotels Association, Dr. Edward Ackah-Nyamike said hotel managers may be compelled to lay off workers and stop paying salaries due to challenges associated with COVID-19 including the lockdown.
“The stimulus package we are talking about is more or less about how to maintain our staff. A lot of the hotels have been able to pay salaries for the month of March but the challenge is going to be one of April. Quite a number of them have shut down and the big question is what happened to the staff. So we are hoping that, if possible the government could support paying some of the staff members and keep them on the payroll so that when things get better. We don’t want to lay off workers after all the investment in training and then when things change we have to go and recruit again which will be far more expensive. We are not asking for full salary support but something that can sustain them,” he said.
Some major hotels in Accra have already shut down their operations due to low patronage.
Prior to this, some laid-off casual workers, and were preparing to cut down on permanent staff to be able to sustain their operations.