• Mon. Apr 22nd, 2024

NIPR Taskforce Initiates Measures To Sanction Unlicensed PR Practitioners, Urges Compliance, Awareness

The Chairman of the Compliance and Enforcement Committee at the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), General Chris Olukolade (Rtd), has unveiled plans to impose sanctions on individuals practicing public relations without the necessary certification, affirming the committee’s readiness to enforce relevant laws.

General Olukolade, a former Director Defence Information (DDI), disclosed these measures during the inaugural meeting of the committee, which comprises prominent public relations practitioners from various sectors, including security, paramilitary, public service, and the private industry.

Addressing the gathering, General Olukolade emphasized the institute’s intent to implement robust structures across all levels to ensure strict compliance with NIPR laws. He highlighted the imminent establishment of chapter-level Compliance and Enforcement Committees in all states and pledged to collaborate with the institute’s council in enforcing these regulations.

He stated, “We are poised to sensitize and engage in awareness campaigns with diverse stakeholders and the public. Concurrently, we are preparing to institute the NIPR Tribunal to prosecute unlicensed practitioners unlawfully engaged in PR without proper registration, as stipulated by the NIPR Act.”

The committee intends to launch monitoring efforts targeting PR-related advertisements and recruitments, intending to prosecute both individuals and corporate entities violating the NIPR Act.

Dr. Igwe Chibueze, the Committee Secretary, outlined the committee’s terms of reference. These included establishing functional monitoring teams in collaboration with state chapters to ensure nationwide compliance with the NIPR Act, identifying organizations engaging non-NIPR members for PR roles, and seeking support from regulatory bodies to enforce employment and contract guidelines related to PR jobs.

Several esteemed members attended the inaugural meeting, including former Army, Navy, and Police Spokespersons, as well as representatives from EFCC, Customs, and various state NIPR chapters.

Dr. Ike Neliaku, President of NIPR, emphasized the need for firm enforcement of the 1990 NIPR Practitioners Act, urging members to uphold its provisions. He underscored the appointment of renowned professionals, including serving security officers, as part of the institute’s commitment to purging the profession of unlicensed practitioners, known as quacks.

Dr. Neliaku also addressed concerns about the consistent appointment of non-registered individuals as spokespeople in government agencies, urging compliance with the law and warning of impending legal action against violators.

The NIPR, under the directive of the Honourable Minister of Information and Strategy, Muhammed Idris, has intensified efforts to eliminate quacks and unlicensed professionals from Nigeria’s PR landscape. Effective information management is deemed crucial to national peace and security.

Dr. Igwe Hosea Chibueze, appointed as the committee’s secretary, brings a wealth of experience as a PR practitioner and security consultant, playing a pivotal role in fostering cooperation among security agencies.

Hyacinth Beluchukwu Nwafor

Hyacinth Beluchukwu Nwafor is a seasoned journalist and the CEO/Founder Belch Digital Communications, publishers of Hybrid News Nigeria.

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