The Nigeria Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) has signed a historic deal with the Image Merchants Promotion Limited (IMPR) – publishers of PRNigeria, Spokespersons’ Digest and Economic Confidential – for the hosting of annual Spokespersons’ Communications Awards (SCA).
The epoch-making Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the President of NIPR, Dr Ike Neliaku and Managing Director IMPR, Mallam Yushau A. Shuaib at the institute in Abuja.
The Awards will be an evolution of the SCA which the IMPR has been organising on its own for three years. While this year’s SCA will hold on December 7 and the final edition as presently constituted, it will be succeeded by the new format to be unveiled in March 2024 in line with the agreement signed between the two partners.
According to the agreement, NIPR will: “Endorse the annual Spokespersons Awards ceremony as a the chief host, issue appropriate notifications to its members in the various chapters and relevant stakeholders for support and participation, include the as an activity in its annual National Spokespersons Summit, provide the venue of the annual National Spokespersons Summit for the event and nominate the Chairman and three other members of the seven-member panel of jury for the awards.”
On its part, IMPR will take responsibility for organising and financing the Award process “including the production of trophies, souvenirs and other logistics required for the award. It will also handle the publicity and media relations for the event that will take place alongside the Annual National Spokespersons Summit.
“It will also create and manage the website for the award event and receive all entries, host and cater for the secretariat of the awards, nnominate the secretary and two other members of the seven-member panel of jury for the awards annually.
Apart from winning series of African SABRE PR Awards instituted by Provoke Media in a collaboration with African Public Relations Association and the Golden World Awards (GWA) of the International Public Relations Association (IPRA), Image Merchants Promotion was ranked the most creative PR agency worldwide by the Global Creative Index in 2020.
IMPR provides PR advisories to various sectors, including the financial industry, security agencies, public service and non-governmental organisations. Its expertise extends to handling complex communication challenges and promoting positive narratives.
Speaking on the agreement, the NIPR President, Dr Ike Neliaku, said: “Today, we are making history in the reawakening of a new dawn for the practice of PR in Nigeria. This is the third in the series of MoUs we are signing with credible organisations led by NIPR practitioners, those who are contributing their quotas to the service of the Institute, and then by extension adding value to nation building.
“We are here to sign with our own Mallam Yushau Shuaib and his team from IMPR, who have expressed interest and NIPR has accepted for us to work together to expand the spokesperson and communication awards which his organisation initiated and have been running for some years now.
“As many of us are aware, NIPR is coming with the National Spokespersons Summit, a flagship programme aimed at having a solid foundation of spokespersons in Nigeria, cutting across private, public and the civil society; also cutting across local, state and federal levels.
“This is why we are here today, because this is the first component of that action which we are going to talk about in March next year,” he said.
The CEO of IMPR, Mallam Yushau Shuaib, said the spokespersons’ awards would recognise accomplishments, motivate others to strive for excellence, enhance visibility and add legitimacy to the reputation of recipients by demonstrating superiority, expertise and uniqueness.
“It will also offer networking opportunities for collaborations, and business relationships and provide benchmarking by setting new standards and encourage improved performance and boost employee morale and increase job satisfaction,” he said.
“We initiated this idea in 2018 with the former NIPR President, Mallam Mukhtar Sirajo who commended our various exploits on the international scene, we are glad that new leadership of the institute under Dr Neliaku now concretises this with this solid agreement,” he added.
Also present at the signing ceremony were Vice President of NIPR, Professor Emmanuel Dandaura, former Army spokesman, Brig Gene Sani Usman Kukasheka (Rtd) the Registrar of the Institute, Uzoma Onyegbadue and former Commissioner for Information in Adamawa state, Alhaji Ahmad Ibrahim Sajoh among other top PR practitioners.