Let’s Use Public Relations to Forge Unity Across Africa – Information Minister

Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, has stressed the imperative need to leverage the power of public relations in the collective efforts to forge unity, understanding, and shared prosperity across the African continent.

Idris made the remarks in Abuja on Wednesday when he received a delegation comprising the new President of the African Public Relations Association, Mr. Arik Karani, the President of Global Alliance for Public Relations, Mr. Justin Green and the President of Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, Dr. Ike Neliaku.

“It’s important that we work together not just to advance the cause of public relations on the continent but also to ensure that we use public relations to forge unity on the continent, understanding and shared prosperity that we all aspire to so that not just Nigeria and Africa but the world will be bound by common humanity,” he said.

The Minister, who expressed delight at hosting the President of the Global Alliance for Public Relations, pledged the commitment of the Tinubu Administration to create the enabling environment for the media and public relations to thrive in the country.

“I assure you that this administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu will continue to provide the enabling environment for everybody within the communication industry and public relations practitioners to thrive in this country,” he said.

Idris said President Tinubu is desirous of ensuring that all democratic principles are observed in the country in order to advance the cause of democracy.

He used the occasion to announce that Public Relations has now been designated as a cadre in the Civil Service and hailed the commitment of the NIPR President, Dr. Neliaku, for championing the elevation of Public Relations in Nigeria.

The Minister is hopeful that with the entrenchment of public relations in Nigeria and Africa, the continent would be aspiring to occupy top positions in the Global Alliance for Public Relations.

In his remarks, the President of the African Public Relations Association (APRA), Mr. Karani, praised Nigeria for trailing the blaze in public relations as the first country in Africa to enact a law that professionalize public relations practice.

He said APRA would copy the example of Nigeria with a view to promoting the enactment of public relations legislations in other African countries.

“This is for the longest time the only country in Africa that had a law that professionalize public relations. It was Nigeria that started it on the continent and only last year that Zambia came out with the law. So now we have two countries on the continent and only now in Kenya the bill for professionalizing public relations is at the second reading in parliament. We are also taking note not only in terms of reputation and communication but how we can replicate it across Africa,” he said.

On his part, President of Global Alliance for Public Relations, Mr. Green, said he is in Nigeria to celebrate the successes of NIPR in Africa and that the Alliance had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Institute to establish a degree-awarding academy for public relations practice in the country.

The President of NIPR, Dr. Neliaku used the occasion for formally introduced the newly elected secretary general of the African Public Relations Association, a Nigerian, Omoniyi Ibietan.

Rabiu Ibrahim
Special Assistant (Media) to the Minister of Information and National Orientation.

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