Cape Town – The Gambia wants to shake off its reputation for sex tourism and has, therefore, warned tourists visiting the west African country for sex to stay away, reports say.
According to UK’s Express, Gambian officials said they wanted to put a stop to sex tourism.
“What we want is quality tourists. Tourists that come to enjoy the country and the culture, but not tourists that come just for sex,” the report quoted Director of the Gambia Tourism Board, Abubacarr S Camara, as saying.
The Gambia has warned old British women to stop traveling to the country to pay young Gambian men for sex and love.
Many old and retired British women travel to The Gambia to pay young men known as “bumsters” for sex. pic.twitter.com/k0LwByyW0w
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The sex tourism in the country, known as “The Smiling Coast”, surged in the 1990s.
“Young male sex workers, sometimes known locally as ‘beach boys’ have been spotted with older women on nights out,” the report said.
Social media played a huge role when it came to scamsters who targeted rich UK grannies, The Sun UK reported.
“Since the late 1990s, The Gambia has been the destination of choice for older British women seeking sun, sea, and saucy shenanigans. These tourists made a habit of visiting the West African country to pay young adult males for sex, creating a very seedy ‘market-within-a-market’.
“The men who take part in these arrangements have come to be known as ‘bumsters’,” The South African said.
But a top tourism official of the country of around 2.5 million people said the government would welcome tourists interested in the positive side of the country and not those who came just for sex.
Compiled by Betha Madhomu