Former Editor of The Guardian on Sunday, Jahman Oladejo Anikulapo, has advocated for the professionalization of media units of various Cultural Agencies to give the sector quality reporting.

Stating this in a paper, titled, “Effective Media Relations in the Public Service: Leveraging on the Media to Make NICO Relevant at the Zonal Level,” which he delivered at a Management Retreat organized by the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), at Pauliham Hotels and Resort, Gwarimpa Estate, Abuja, Jahman said this can be done by engaging the services of professional media managers.

Decrying the situation, where those who are not experienced in media practice, direct affairs in Media Units of Government Agencies, he said such people mismanage the Media and Public Relations of such agencies, which adversely affect the image of the Government, stressing that this informed why Ministries of Culture and Tourism should recruit well qualified and experienced media personnel, so that Nigerian culture will receive positive national and international media attention.

According to him, since the policies of government at all levels are executed through culture and orientation, all the agencies in the Ministry should manage information properly and professionally to boost, not only culture, but domestic and international tourism.

The veteran journalist proposed a model with the acronym, P-R-I-D-E, meaning: Partnership, Reach, Invest, Differentiated and Experiential, for media practitioners to achieve the objectives and mandates of their agencies.

His words: “P-R-I-D-E, as an acronym, means that in partnership, a high profile relationship should be established with respected media; reach people to  identify your objectives; invest is building a brand; differentiated is to ensure your destination is clearly mapped out as you define your core messages; and experientaltial is to showcase your mandate the way it will touch people. When people are touched, awareness will increase over the activities of the cultural agencies.”

Continuing, he commended NICO for its efforts in bringing arts and culture journalists in Nigeria together through its NICO Quarterly Natıonal Medıa Workshop for Arts Wrıters and Edıtors, adding that through that platform, the Institute is encouraging arts, culture, and tourism reporting in Nigeria.

He concluded that management should sustain its laudable programmes through increased awareness of the Institute and its statutory objectives in the zones, educate the zones about the resources of NICO with the local environment, publicise NICO services or products to the various communities in NICO zones – women, youth, traders, market women, artisans and office workers, and create awareness for the business potential of the Institute.

Nwagbo Pat Obi Corporate Affairs