From TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Paulinus Nsirim, has said the right-thinking Nigerians know that the country is presently at a cross-road.
He has also charged public relations practitioners to rise to their onus, stressing that Nigeria is in dire needs of leaders to delivers the country from political quagmire.
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Nsirim declared this at the Masterclass event of the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), in Port Harcourt, charging the practitioners not to leave the political process in hands leadership that have nothing to offer.
He said: “Every right-thinking Nigerian understands that this country is at crossroad. And we cannot afford to leave our political process in the hands of those who don’t have what it takes to offer us quality service it takes to bring us out of political quagmire.
“So, today’s event will position you and I not just to interrogate the political process, but to get the political gladiators to appreciate what it means to govern, what it means to lead.
“And looking at the current Electoral Acts, we believe that when public relations practitioners get themselves actively involved in the political process, it’s likely to have a credible fair election that would produce for Nigeria, patriotic leaders, who have the passion to give us quality service.”
The commissioner, who is also the state chairman of NIPR, admonished PR practitioners to tap from the reservoir knowledge of the lead facilitator, Yomi Bodejo-Ogunsanya.
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He stated: “Let me say that this Masterclass by our assessment will position public relations practitioners in Rivers State to own their own the political process this dispensation.
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“We have found out over the years that public relations practitioners just sit on the fence and watch the political process without being active participants professionally speaking.
“So, today, now that we building the foundation of the last Masterclass, where we believe strongly that a good number of us now know how to own a public relations firms, this particular Masterclass will give the requisite skills to be part of political process and electioneering in Nigeria.
“What we want to achieve is that you will be equipped with those skills that would the average politician want to employ your services. If you don’t have a skill to offer, nobody will request for your service.
“We believe that at the end of this programme, expressing optimism that at the end of the programme, the participants would be properly equipped to assist politicians in communicating that social contract plants with people of Nigeria.
“So, today’s event will give you that skill that would help politicians in Nigeria to communicate effectively. Our duty as public relations practitioners is to guide them (politicians) to communicate effectively, so that the populace would internalize their campaign messages in a manner that would help our leadership recruitment process in 2023.”
Meanwhile, the lead facilitator, Badejo-Ogunsanya, took the participants round the rudiments of communication and public relations.
He tasked them to develop saleable skills that could make politicians employ their services, especially in the 2023 election.