Foreign tourists and local tourists have been assured of safety in Malindi resort town after the kidnapping of an Italian Aid worker at Chakama village early this week.
Stakeholders in the tourism industry in Malindi are concerned about negative media publicity in Malindi and Kilifi County that some Al-shabaab militants have attacked some tourists in the area.
Speaking to the press at a Malindi hotel Thursday the stakeholders among them hoteliers, beach operators, and officials from county government called the media to stop spoiling the good image of Malindi resort town.
They however said they were worried that if the same publicity continued, then in the next three days it could lead to cancellations of tourists’ bookings.
Mr. Freddie De Curatolo, the spokesman of the Italian Community in Malindi blamed the media, especially the locals who broke the news that there was an attack in Malindi by Al-Shabaab.
The Italian Community Spokesman said they were saddened by the attack on five locals and kidnapping of Silvia Romano, but were not afraid because they have always lived safely.
He however said currently there are fears of bookings cancellation just because of the attack which took place about 100kilometres far away.
Phillip Chai, Chairman Kenya Association of Hotels Caterers (KAHC) said as investors they were concerned about what happened in Chakama village which is 86 kilometres away because it is ruining the industry.
“We are asking the county and national governments to intensify security, so as to ensure festive season goes well and prevent any incidents that could scare tourists,’’ he said.
Currently security personnel are still pursuing the Italian aid worker and have called on the public to avail information that could lead to her rescue and arrest of the attackers.
By Simon Guruba