The role of the cultural institutions in tourism development a case study of Inzu Ya Masaba in Mbale district
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The study was carried out at Inzu yamasaba in Mbale district to assess the role of the cultural institutions in tourism development. It was guided by objectives to; To identify different sites under Inzu Ya Masaba Cultural Instiution in Mbale district, To assess the contribution of Inzu Ya Masaba cultural institution towards tourism development in Mbale district and To evaluate the strategies put in place by Inzu Ya Masaba to promote tourism development in Mbale district. Up to 60 respondents (local community members, park staff and tours operators) were selected using simple random sampling and objective sampling techniques. Questionnaires and guided interviews were used. Data were analyzed quantitatively using SPS and qualitatively using thematic analysis. The study revealed that there are tourism sites found at Inzu Ya Masaba cultural institution and these were identified as Mutoto, Semei kakungulu and community bull fights. Community bull fights and Semei Kakungulu cultural sites are popular cultural sites at Inzu Ya Masaba. Further the study revealed different contributions of Inzu Ya Masaba to development of tourism in Mbale district as it was found out that Inzu Ya Masaba plays a big role in creation of tourism awareness among population, preservation of culture among the local people by formulating guidelines and encouraging development of tourism infrastrastructures and all this help the local community to identify themselves in their cultural identity and able to develop cultural tourism in the areas of Mbale district. Different strategies such as; sensitization of local people about cultural tourism participation, marketing of the cultural tourism resources through using internet sources to be able to attract more foreign tourists and preservation of cultural activities and sites are employed by the Inzu Ya Masaba and these included; local people are being trained people in tourism related jobs and lobbying of funds to develop these cultural institutions. Strategies such as sensitization of the local people and marketing for tourism activities were rated as very effective strategies in place. Based on the above findings, the study recommends that the management of Inzu Ya Masaba to involve the local people in decision making, the investors and the resource managers endeavor to educate the local community members on the importance of tourism to their local economy and the overall development of the area and finally the study recommended the Local Government in collaboration with the central government tarmacs the road connecting to cultural sites especially Semei Kakungulu to ensure connectivity of tourists to the destination.