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APRA unveils five-point agenda to lift PR practice in Africa

Published by Guardian on Mon, 23 Jan 2012


THE newly constituted executive council of the African Public Relations Associations (APRA) has designed five-point agenda that will define the operational framework of the continental body in the next two years. APRA is the umbrella organisation for all national public relations bodies and practitioners on the African continent.The five key areas according to APRA Secretary General, Mr. Yomi Badejo-Okusanya (YBO), are: 'StrengtheningMembership; Strengthening Financial Base;Strengthening Operational Structures; Strengthening Practice (in terms ofcapacity and knowledge) and Strengthening Relevance (both within and outside the continent).'The election was part of the highlights of the 24th Annual General Conference of the association held in Mombasa, Kenya.A total of 135 members from different member nations in Africa participated in the conference.Others officials of the Executive Council of APRA are Mr. Peter Mutie of Kenya as President; and Ms. Christina Chima of Zimbabwe as Vice President.By his new role as the Secretary General of APRA, Badejo-Okusanya is saddled with the responsibility of coordinating the activities of the association across the continent through the secretariat and ensure that APRA achieves one of its primary objectives of selling 'Positive Africa' through the instrumentality of public relations. He has been Managing Director of CMC Connect Limited (Perception Managers), one of Nigeria's foremost Public Relations consulting firms.Established in March 2008, APRA is the successor body to the Federation of African Public Relations Associations (FAPRA), which was inaugurated in 1975 in Nairobi, Kenya. APRA's aims and objectives are to promote African unity and co-operation especially as a consultant body to the African Union and its various agencies.Speaking on his election, Badejo-Okusanya thanked the members of APRA for the confidence reposed in him and other elected officials. On behalf of all the newly elected executives, he pledged that efforts would be concentrated on strengthening membership, the financial base and operational structure of the organisation.The consummate perception management expert further stated that APRA is set to work with stakeholders to expand the frontiers of PR practice in Africa by encouraging the growth of national and sub-regional public relations associations on the continent.Badejo-Okusanya, an immediate past national council member of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), is also a one-time Chairman of the Lagos State Chapter of the NIPR. He has consecutively emerged the Most Outstanding PR Practitioner in Nigeria at the 2010 and 2011 editions of the NIPR Golden Eagle Awards. Only recently, he was also inducted into the Public Relations Hall of Fame by the Osun State Chapter of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations by the Osun State Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola.While acknowledging the immense contribution of the immediate past scribe and president of the association, Dr. Wole Adamolekun; and Kate Bapela in that order, Badejo-Okusanya solicited the support of APRA members scattered across the continent in order to accomplish the set goals.'We will, no doubt, have to rely on the support and commitment of all members to build a continental professional body we can be truly proud of. The secretariat promises an open channel of communication with members to enable us achieve our collective goals. Should you have any suggestions on how we can move the association forward, we will look forward to receiving them, ' he said.
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