Taleb Rifai: I am proud of all candidates

Taleb Rifai, the current secretary – general of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) told eTN today: ” I am proud of all candidates today and found great value in all presentations I heard.”

Today the Executive Council of the UNWTO is meeting in Madrid to select a new leader for world tourism.

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All five candidates presented their ideas this morning and executive council members are now voting to present their selection to the next full assembly in China later this year. A result is expected within an hour or two from publishing this article.

Media was not allowed to attend the presentation, but eTN managed to get feedback from some delegates attending the event.

In a nutshell, the presentation by the Zimbabwe minister Waler Mzembi (published by eTN earlier) was very detailed and showed a high level of knowledge and vision.

The same was true for the presentation by Carlos Vogeler, who is the running mate with candidate Dho Young-shim from Korea.

Dho Young-shim complimented her part of the presentation in listing achievements pointing out sustainable tourism projects and her love for Africa, assisting developing countries with the STEP program this candidate was leading for the last ten years.

The presentation by Zurab Pololikashvili, the candidate from Georgia was disappointing. Marcio Favila from Brazil address was well thought through. eTN did not get a feedback on the presentation from Colombia.

Strangely Alain St. Ange was allowed to address the executive council before the election. His emotional speech most likely influenced the election.

At the press conference after the election, Taleb Rifai explained. There are two factors a candidate is judged:
1) By his or her ability to lead, character and vision
2) By the country and the standing of the country he or she represents.

After the presentations candidates were seen in suspense talking about the possible outcome.

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