Assistant Information Minister for Tourism, Princess Turkolon, has met with key stakeholders in the tourism sector as a first step towards achieving Liberia’s tourism and investment development plan.
At a consultative meeting which was held at the Ministry of Information in Monrovia on Tuesday, Turkolon disclosed that she and her team met with Liberian surfers in Robertsport to discuss the potential of tourism in the city and the future of young surfers who are involved in the sport.
Turkolon said the mission of the ministry is to develop Robertsport, because the city has already been named as a potential hotspot by some of the world’s best surfers, adding that “it will take lots of engagements and buy-ins, along with a focus from the government to make this happen.”
The Robertsport meeting, according to her, was attended by a cross-section of stakeholders, including the Ambassador of Ghana to Liberia, Ernest B. Asare-Asiedu; Deputy Minister of Labor Phil Dixon and the Director General of National Fisheries and Aquaculture, Emma Metieh-Glascow.
Turkolon said the focus group meeting was held in collaboration with Red Oil Inc., a Liberian- owned and operated management firm.
At the meeting, the Assistant Minister said surfers expressed the need for support to the sport so as to enhance their capabilities to compete at international level.
“If we can get the support, some of us can go to the Olympics one day,” Turkolon quotes Benjamin McCrumada, who is one of two young men who were the first Liberian surfers in Robertsport.
Currently, Robertsport City has 48 male and female surfers, aged 8 to 26, who hit the ocean daily looking for that next big wave.
Sliding Liberia, a film released in 2008 by surfing enthusiast Dan Malloy and his group of filmmakers and surfers, was the first to showcase Robertsport and its world-class waves.
Located between the picturesque Lake Piso, the country’s largest lake and the Atlantic Ocean, Sliding Liberia shocked the surfing world with waves that rivalled some of the best in the world.
The film also showed Robertsport’s natural environment, canoeing, cultural dancing and other tourism assets.
Since then, Liberia has enjoyed visits from the world’s best surfers, international media, including BBC, Time Magazine, New York Times and others, which have placed Robertsport in the category of one of the top 10 best places in the world to surf.