The National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) has sought for collaboration from Leadership and Daily Trust Newspapers in the execution of one of its key programmes, the Annual Round Table on Cultural Orientation (ARTCO), on the theme, Indigenous Language Newspapers and National Development.

Executive Secretary of NICO, Assoc. Prof. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, disclosed this on Thursday, 30th March, 2017, when he paid courtesy visits to the corporate head offices of the media outfits, Leadership Group Ltd and Media Trust Ltd, in Abuja, saying their choice for collaboration was informed by the fact that they have been in the vanguard of promoting indigenous language newspaper publishing in the country.

leadAddressing the editorial team at Leadership Newspaper, the ES of NICO, who said the ARTCO is a platform, where stakeholders gather to look at specific areas in the culture sector that need serious attention, requested the Chairman/Publisher of Leadership Group Ltd, Sam Nda-Isaiah, to present the Keynote Lecture at the event, on the topic, Indigenous Language Newspaper Publishing in Nigeria: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”, as part of his contribution to the programme.

According to him, it was in recognition of the vanguard role Leadership Newspaper has been playing in the promotion of indigenous language newspaper publishing that the Institute deemed it fit to bring the Newspaper outfit on board.

His words: “In our own reasoning, we have Sam Nda-Isaiah, as the keynote speaker during the roundtable. We have a list of most indigenous newspapers in the country, with some of them moribund; and we think this platform, through the various presentations, will provide some useful ideas and even encourage those that have gone off the streets on how to revive their indigenous papers.

Our visit is to humbly invite the Chairman, as Keynote Speaker, as his contribution to the programme, seek collaboration in the area of print publicity for the Round Table and also mainstream NICO programmes in the Leadership Newspaper, especially from the Arts and Culture desk, as well as give special attention to NICO’s Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP).

 DaiIn his meeting with the Management of Daily Trust Newspaper, Ayakoroma also solicited for collaboration, requesting the CEO/Editor-in-Chief, Media Trust Ltd, Mallam Manir Dan Ali to speak on the topic:Re-appraisal of The Role of Stakeholders in the Sustenance of Indigenous Language Newspaper in Nigeria” during the Roundtable.

His words: We rightly think that the CEO/Editor-in-Chief of Media Trust Ltd should be one of our speakers in the programme; so we have come to humbly invite him as speaker, as part of Media Trust’s contribution to making the programme a success.

Our thinking is that any indigenous language newspaper is indispensable as far as the promotion and preservation of our indigenous languages is concerned. We tried to go through to know the number of newspaper houses that have indigenous versions on their stables; and we found out that here in Abuja, we have Daily Trust and Leadership newspapers; and of course if we are doing a programme like this, we need your partnership.

In his response, Christian Ochiama, the Executive Vice-President of Leadership Group, who received the NICO Boss, said Leadership Newspaper has consistently supported government agencies to serve and ensure that every aspect of Nigerias life, especially the culture aspect is promoted, giving the assurance that the Publisher, who is interested in the development of culture, will honour NICOs request.

In a similar vein, the Business Director at Media Trust Ltd, Mr. Aliu Akoshile, while responding to Prof. Barclays Ayakoroma’s request, commended him, saying it was the first time they have received a visitor, who has done a very fine PowerPoint presentation, which goes to show that culture is not and inhibition to neither technology nor innovation.

While expressing pleasure with the issues presented by the ES, Akoshile, who stressed that development communication cannot effectively get to the grassroots except with the use of a medium that is dear to people at the grassroots, assured that Media Trust Ltd will fully partner NICO on the programmes, as the CEO/Editor-in-Chief will not only honour the invitation to present a paper, but also deploy all the platforms at his disposal to impact on the programme.

Meanwhile, the Annual Round Table on Cultural Orientation (ARTCO), which is being organized in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture at the Arewa House, Kaduna, is scheduled to hold on 15th-16th May, 2017.

The Executive Secretary was accompanied on the visits to the two media houses by the Mr. Alex Omijie (Director, Orientation & Cultural Affairs); Alhaji Ibrahim Husseini (Acting Director, Admin & Human Resources); Mr. Mike Ekoko (Acting Director, Research & Documentation); Mr. Law Ezeh (Deputy Director/SA-ES), Mrs. Francisca Okoro (Assistant Director, Orientation & Cultural Affairs Department), and other support staffers.

Caleb Nor

Media Assistant to ES

NICO HQ, Abuja