In a significant development for tourism along the historical Kokoda Track, Tourism Promotion Authority’s (TPA) Chief Executive Officer, Eric Mossman Uvovo, was sworn in as the Deputy Chairman of the Kokoda Track Special Purposes Authority’s (KTA) Management Committee during a ceremony held at Stanley’s Hotel on Tuesday, March 19, Port Moresby. 

The swearing-in ceremony witnessed the appointment of a total of 10 committee members, representing government agencies, Local Level government representatives, and Landowner leaders. Among the notable appointments, Jack Deia, the Landowner Representative of the Koiari people, was elected as the Chairman of the KTA committee following a vote by committee members.

The event was attended by dignitaries including the Minister for Tourism, Arts & Culture, Hon. Isi Henry Leonard, and the Governor of Central Province, Rufina Peter, along with representatives from government bodies, Kokoda Landowners, KTA members, and the Conservation and Protection Authority (CEPA).
Addressing the gathering, Honourable Minister, Isi Henry Leonard, emphasized the crucial role of the KTA in promoting tourism. 

“The Kokoda track is one of this country’s largest tourism attractions, not just because of its historical significance, but also its natural beauty that attracts many to this iconic site,” said Leonard. 

Governor Rufina Peter echoed Minister Leonard’s sentiments, congratulating the newly sworn-in committee members and stressing the importance of prioritizing the interests of the landowners. 

“I’d like to encourage you all to listen to the landowners and the people – Landowners must be happy,” Governor Peter remarked. 

She further emphasized the economic potential of tourism, highlighting its role in providing a sustainable alternative to mining and ensuring the preservation of the Kokoda Track’s cultural and environmental heritage.

Tourism Promotion Authority’s (TPA) Chief Executive Officer, Eric Mossman Uvovo, highlighted the significance of Kokoda Track tourism emphasizing the need to showcase this iconic site to the global audience. 

“Kokoda is one of our most important tourism products, and we should be driving this product to the world.

When you talk about conserving the environment and the lush ecosystem at Kokoda, when you talk about sustainability for the landowners and for their many generations to come, then we have to really start talking about tourism for Kokoda,” said Uvovo. 

Uvovo’s appointment as Deputy Chairman of the KTA Management Committee signifies a collaborative effort towards enhancing tourism management and sustainable development along the Kokoda Track. With the collective expertise and dedication of committee members, the KTA is poised to play a pivotal role in advancing tourism initiatives and preserving the cultural and natural heritage of this iconic site for future generations.

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