The Edo State government has said it will back the state chapter of the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations’ fight against quackery noting that the institute should be persuasive in its approach rather than confrontational.
The Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Chris Nehikhare, who stated this while hosting the state officials of the NIPR at the weekend, said the government would also look at other areas it can collaborate and support the body.
Nehikhare assured the institute of a conducive area to hold its meeting, noting that the visit has shed more light on the operation of the NIPR.
He said, “The state government would provide the NIPR a place to hold its meeting and I will urge the leadership of the NIPR in the state to apply the principle of persuasion on the unregistered and unlicensed practitioners rather being confrontational in the course of enforcing the law guiding the practice of Public Relations, he added.
Speaking earlier, the state chairman of the NIPR, Dr. James-Wisdom Abhulimen,
said that the public relations practice, over the years has evolved as critical component of corporate governance and leadership in Nigeria.
He also notef that NIPR is empowered by law to regulate the practice and direct the development of Public Relations as a profession in Nigeria, while commending the state government for the provision of enabling environment for workers in the state, which he said, has positively impacted in the discharge of workers’ duties.
He said, “The law also makes it illegal to practice Public Relations, under any title, in Nigeria without NIPR certification and since the assumption of office of this current NIPR Executive in Edo, we have been working assiduously to reinvent the institute in the state through various programmes and initiatives.
“As a pragmatic step to achieve our agenda, the exco deemed it necessary to set up five Standing Committee: Advocacy an Professional Practice, Educational and Conference, Publicity, Finance and Development Committees”, he said.
He said that there is an existential symbolic relationship and synergy between the Ministry of Information and Communication NIPR, being the key government institution responsible for the coordinating and executing of Public Relations functions in government at all levels.
Dr Abhulimen maintained the synergy underscored the need for collaboration between NIPR and the Ministry in the strive to building relationship, influence opinion, manage reputation and project the activities and actions of government to critical stakeholders and the public.
“We do hereby solicit the Ministry’s support and commitment to the growth of NIPR. We implore the Ministry to support the development of NIPR in advocating of Public Relations professionals into key strategic decision-making processes within the state government.
“Explore potential areas of collaboration, such as elimination of quackery, capacity building, training, knowledge sharing and professional development initiatives
‘The NIPR criminalises the practice of Public Relations by non licensed persons including employees of government, information officers, spoke-persons , PROs, Medical/Corporate Communications Heads, no matter the nomenclature’, he said.