Gov’t clueless on what tourists want — Lorna Smith
Territorial At-Large candidate for the National Democratic Party (NDP), Lorna Smith has slammed the Virgin Islands Party (VIP) government for being oblivious in its approach to issues facing the local tourism industry.
Pointing to several ATM machines in the Second District she claimed remained in disrepair for months, the former First Lady told residents at a campaign rally earlier this week that they need to be addressed as a matter of urgency.
According to Smith, most day-trippers who come to the territory as tourists spend their time in Cane Garden Bay and often need access to facilities such as ATMS, especially in instances where they do not want to use their credit cards for purchases.
“[The issue] really goes to the heart of a government, a government that is clueless in terms of what visitors expect and what visitors want,” Smith contended. “I say it without apology.”
“A phone call from the government [to] whoever is in charge, would get those ATM machines fixed in short order. But nothing is a priority. It is time for a new administration… to take the wheel and steer the ship of state out of adversity,” Smith insisted.
Smith charged that the territory must start with a tourism plan that concentrates on improving its tourism product and the synergies of the power of land and cruise tourism, working in tandem.
Smith claimed that the territory is drowning in its current ‘anything goes’ state which she argued has to change.
She said a new government will review approaches to the further diversification of the tourism and financial services industries and determine the best approach to how the government can lead this. She also promised that initiatives in the territory’s sustainable and eco-tourism offerings will be included in that review.