By Dipo Olowookere
The chief executive officer of Loatsad Promo Media Limited, operators of the billboard at the Lekki Toll Plaza in Lagos, Mr Seyi Tinubu, has admitted that his company switched off the lights at the scene of the shooting of innocent and unarmed protesters by soldiers on Tuesday night.
Yesterday, Nigerian forces shot at peaceful protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate demanding for a better police and governance in the country. It was believed that several persons were killed and many injured.
According to reports, moments before the unfortunate incident, which has been condemned widely worldwide, some persons were seen removing the CCTVs at the toll gate, while the lights were switched off.
On Wednesday, Mr Tinubu, son of a former Governor of Lagos State, Mr Bola Ahmed Tinubu, said his company switched off the lights on the directive of the present Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
Mr Tinubu, in a statement issued by his firm through its Instagram page, noted that the lights were put off in compliance with the curfew imposed on the state yesterday.
“The board was switched off based on the Governor’s curfew request,” Mr Tinubu said, stressing that he had “no idea what was going to happen.”
According to him, the shooting has left him devastated, describing it as an “ungodly act,” praying for “the victims and families” of the unfortunate incident.
He said he supported the #EndSARS movement and promised to “continue to support the youths of this great nation.”
Read the full unedited statement below:
When we started in 2014, we had a plan to change the perception of African start-ups in the global space. We believed as Africans, we could create something great and we set out with a N4m loan from a bank and we started trading, going from door to door begging for work and relentlessly grew the business employing and empowering over 200 Nigerians today directly or indirectly. We have supported many upcoming businesses, artists, people in need as giving back to our community has always been our passion (all this can be verified).
All of our achievements thus far have come the from hard work, sweat and determination of our work force and everything Loatsad has been doing has been open, all taxes are remitted and payments to agencies and regulatory bodies have been timely, so we can be proud to say we are contributing the growth of the industry and Nation.
When the “EndSars” and “say no to police brutality” protests started from day one we wholly supported the movement and used all our platforms to promote the messages (I believe the promoters can verify this information) as we believed in the cause.
On Tuesday when the curfew was announced we heeded the governors warnings and didn’t want our staff in any danger, hence by 3pm our staff had been ordered to leave the site and the board was switched off based on the governors curfew request.
We had no idea what was going to happen and we feel the same anguish, pain and shock at the events that unfolded and our hearts and prayers go out to the victims and families of this ungodly act.
We believe in this movement and that it was the start of the change our generation needed to move our country forward and we will continue to support the youths of this great nation.
LG Polls: Ogun Imposes Movement Restriction
By Adedapo Adesanya
The Ogun State Government has announced a statewide restriction of movement between 7 am and 4 pm on Saturday, July 24, 2021, to allow for the conduct of local government elections.
The State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Abdulwaheed Odusile, said the restriction was at the instance of the Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission (OGSIEC), which is conducting the councilorship and chairmanship elections in all the 236 wards across the 20 local government areas in the state.
However, during the period of the restriction, voters will be free to move to their polling centres within their neighbourhood and cast their votes for the candidates of their choice.
The statement urged the electorate to be peaceful and avoid any act that could tarnish the hard-earned reputation of Ogun State as one of the most peaceful states in the country.
This is coming after the Lagos State Government restricted movement between 8 am and 3 pm on Saturday for the same purpose.
Mr Gbenga Omotoso, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, had said in a statement Thursday that the restriction will enable the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) to conduct hitch-free elections across the 57 local government areas and local council development areas in the state.
“The restriction will facilitate the ease of movement of the electorate, election materials and LASIEC officials for the sanctity of the election, effective monitoring and enhanced security,” Mr Omotoso said.
Everybody Needs PR—Yomi Badejo-Okusanya
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
The Group Managing Director of CMC Connect BCW, Mr Yomi Badejo-Okusanya (YBO), has emphasised the importance of Public Relations to organisations and individuals, saying everybody needs PR.
Mr Badejo-Okusanya, who doubles as the president of the African Public Relations Association (APPA), therefore, submitted that efforts should be made to have a better understanding of the profession, noting that PR is different from journalism but both work together to achieve great results.
He called on organisations, leaders, nations, policy and decision-makers to never overlook the value that PR brings to the table.
“Many still bear in mind that PR is only about press releases and organising events whilst those with an understanding of the weight PR professionals pull as a result of their expertise have yielded great results for themselves,” he said.
Mr Badejo-Okusanya, while speaking on the first-ever World PR Day held on July 16, 2021, charged practitioners to push forward the agenda of PR in their daily dealings, stressing that “PR needs PR.”
The APRA leader said the decision to set aside a day for PR and a unified global agenda was indeed a welcome development, stressing that, for the past 33 years, APPA has been able to gather PR Practitioners in Africa and recently across the globe under one roof to push forward the agenda of PR, the profession itself and discuss issues, trends and solutions to PR needs.
“I am delighted because this day speaks to the fact that our effort is yielding results in ways that will take the profession to the level where it belongs and better utilized by organisations, businesses, nations, brands, individuals, decision and policymakers.
“Truth is, everybody needs PR. It is part of our daily lives and PR is about telling a compelling story! This call for unity on a day such as this will bring about great opportunities and collaborations that will be beneficial to our profession in the long run,” he said.
MIIVOC to Train FIRS Officials on FOI Act
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
A group known as the Media Initiative against Injustice, Violence and Corruption (MIIVOC) is taking steps to improve the knowledge of government officials in the implementation of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act of 2011.
Already, it has concluded arrangements with the management of the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) to train key personnel on the provisions and application of the law.
“Knowledge and capacity on the FOI Act are still very low in the country. There is a need for training and retraining of representatives of public institutions on the provisions and applications of the Act.
“Poor understanding of the provisions of the FOI Act is one of the reasons for its poor implementation in Nigeria, particularly, among state actors,” the Executive Director of MIIVOC, Mr Walter Duru, said.
“Section 13 of the FOI Act makes it mandatory for public institutions to ensure the provision of appropriate training for its officials on the public’s right to access information or records held by the government or public institutions, as provided for in this Act,” he added.
“Pursuant to section 13 of the FOI Act, the present management of FIRS approved the training for relevant officials of the Service on the FOI Act, with the view to ensuring increased compliance. The training is to be held on Thursday and Friday this week in Abuja,” Mr Duru also stated.
The MIIVOC chief, who also chairs the board of the Freedom of Information Coalition, Nigeria called on other public institutions in the country to take steps towards enhancing the capacity of their officials through regular training and retraining on the provisions of the Act.
He also called on Nigerian citizens to take advantage of the FOI Act to hold governments at all levels accountable.
Mr Duru, an Assistant Professor of Communication and Multimedia Design at the American University of Nigeria, Yola is the leader of the non-state actors drive on FOI Implementation in Nigeria – Chairman of Freedom of Information Coalition in Nigeria.
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