Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has urged reputation managers to rebrand the dwindling international image of Nigeria.
Governor Wike said, rebranding of Nigeria was necessary in consideration of the hydra-headed security challenges that are adversely affecting the nation’s socio-economic, political and security development.
Speaking during the 2021 State Conference/Annual General Meeting of the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), Rivers State Chapter in Port Harcourt yesterday, Governor Wike maintained that the survival of Nigeria’s sovereignty is presently burdened by security challenges.
Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Tammy Danagogo, the governor regretted that the negative security situation of the country has depreciated its economic development and called on members of the NIPR to seat up to the challenging career of reputation management.
He said: “We need to seat up to make our people and government realize that everyone must rise to the dire challenges of our country. As PR and media managers, you have crucial roles to play in terms of national development.
“I strongly recommend that all hands must be on deck, especially reputation managers such as members of the NIPR to call on the government and all stakeholders to begin to act in ways that will help revive the battered image, security, and economy of our dear nation.
“Here in Rivers State, our government will continue to support security agencies to ensure a safe and secured environment for the economic prosperity of all. We have set up the Rivers State Neighborhood Watch, Operation Sting and revived the C4i, as an effort to provide security, stimulate growth, development and prosperity of all.”
He noted that the NEW administration has also triggered a deliberate infrastructural development and urban renewal effort to attract local and foreign investment to stimulate the economy of the State.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Information and Communication, who is also the State Chairman of NIPR, Paulinus Nsirim, said the relationship between the Rivers State Government and the State Chapter of NIPR has blossomed during the Governor Nyesom Wike’s administration.
The commissioner noted that Governor Wike, as a visionary leader, has changed the landscape of the State infrastructure and various developmental projects that touch the life of the ordinary man.
He expressed: “We are proud of being associated with the NEW administration and the giant strides he has recorded and continue to record until 2023.
“As a chapter that is responsive to the development of Nigeria, we have chosen the theme: ‘Nigeria Security Situation, A Factor in Reputation and National Development’, as our way of contributing to the national discuss.
“We want to begin to set agenda and mould public opinion. We are excited that as a chapter, we use our annual conference to begin to show a road map for the security situation in Nigeria and national development.”
The National President of NIPR, Mallam Mukhtar Sirajo, further noted that the issues of security needed the attention of all Nigerians, adding that the issue of national interest was dear to all.
Sirajo said: “You can agree that there was a country we all enjoyed living in without fear and looked at one another as brothers and sisters and without asking questions. You will agree with me the situation is no longer the same.
“As an institute that regulates the practice of public relations and at the core of its mandate is relationship building, we feel that it is a duty incumbent on us to build our bridges.
“It is unfortunate that we have come to this path, but we believe that the basis of coming together cannot be served, if there is no communication between the component parts to fix the country.”