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The Travesty of ARCON Regulation

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The Travesty of ARCON Regulation

The Travesty of ARCON Regulation

 

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The journey of the most turbulent and divisive times in the Nigerian Marketing Communications Industry started in 2021 with the launch of the Advertising Industry Standard of Practice (AISOP) by the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), now The Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria (ARCON). APCON had disclosed that AISOP will provide minimum standard in terms of commercial activities of agencies, advertisers, media houses, advertising services providers and stakeholders, in matters relating to the business of advertising and related areas of marketing communications in Nigeria.

 

 

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The Travesty of ARCON Regulation

 

 

However, what APCON claimed to be an Industry Standard of Practice was actually a document on payment and engagement terms, which sought to unconstitutionally regulate contractual relations between private entities (Advertisers and their agencies). ADVAN being a body founded to provide an organised forum for advertisers to express their views and influence developmental changes in Nigerian marketing communications scene, had expressed its concerns about AISOP, particularly its unconstitutional attempt to infringe on the rights of private entities to determine their contractual terms.

 

 

 

 

It is worthy to note that while the Leadership of APCON has claimed that it invited all critical stakeholders to deliberate on the AISOP, the truth is that the ADVAN has clearly stated on several occasions, both in private with the Registrar of APCON Dr Lekan Fadolapo, and in many public fora, that not a single contribution presented by ADVAN was included in the AISOP.

 

 

 

In 2022, a new APCON law was publicized which changed the name of APCON to the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria (ARCON). The new law has several provisions that are clearly unconstitutional, and has caused great concern for the industry. A major item that has stood out for stakeholders is that ARCON is now allowed set up a tribunal that would hold ‘trials’ for any persons or organization that contravened the provisions of the ARCON law. This is an extremely concerning development, because Nigeria as a democratic entity has clear separation of powers between the different arms of government. A regulatory body for advertising cannot set up a tribunal with powers to hear, try, deliver judgment and sentence, as such is clearly a violation of the constitution of the nation. ARCON cannot constitutionally act as both the prosecutor and the judge in relation to matters which they have by themselves, labelled as advertising offences. The tribunal constituted by ARCON is merely an appendage of ARCON and is propagating the agenda of ARCON.

 

 

 

 

In January 2024, ARCON issued notices to law abiding organizations in Nigeria on various unclear charges of infractions, with fines up to N1 million per infraction. It is critical to note that these organizations include multinationals, Indigenous conglomerates and various levels of businesses, that serve as the back bone of the Nigerian economy. ARCON has now issued notices to the CEOs of these organizations to face the ARCON ‘Tribunal’ on various claims of infractions.

 

 

 

 

The Advertisers Association of Nigeria (ADVAN) vehemently opposes the harassment of her members (which are corporate entities that utilize advertising and marketing to promote their goods and services). These invitations to CEOs of reputable Nigerian brands, to stand ‘trial’ is a huge embarrassment and humiliation of law-abiding corporate entities, and has caused a total loss of trust for ARCON as an institution. The harassment and threats of criminal trials to CEOs of both local and multi-nationals is antithetical to the reforms being proposed by the Federal Government through the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council on Ease of Doing Business (PEBEC), and the need to remove all forms of bottlenecks in driving the Nigerian economy.
ADVAN members hereby speak unequivocally against this travesty called ARCON Regulation, as a continuance of this line of action will sabotage all forms of viable activities in the industry. Regulation should be instrumental to an enabling environment where stakeholders can count on fair, clearly articulated guidelines for business activities, and ADVAN members are very supportive of all fair regulations, which enable equitable business activities.
Some critical questions to ARCON include:

 

 

 

 

What are the clearly articulated guidelines for digital advertising, in view of the fact that digital advertising cannot be regulated as traditional advertising?
What constitutes online advertising? is it paid communication, is it all and any posts on corporate social media pages and websites? Do all these fall under the same category and payment structures?
Can a post on a company’s website or social media page that is not paid for, be seen as advertisement?

 

 

 

 

What has been the engagement process to stakeholders on ARCONs regulation of online advertising?

 

 

Regulation cannot be ambiguous or selective in its applications, it should be clearly defined with stakeholders continuously engaged in a quest for seamless implementation.

 

 

Nigeria is currently bowed under one of the most turbulent economic conditions. The position of regulatory institutions at these dire times should be one of research and benchmarking for relevant policies, and consistent stakeholder engagement towards viable economic solutions and growth.

 

 

 

It is time for ARCON to pull the reins on its regime of arbitrary policy initiatives, that is pushing a once buoyant and collaborative industry into chaos, and embark on critical stakeholder dialogue and engagement to foster renewed hope and support for the industry.

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Sahara weekly online is published by First Sahara weekly international. contact saharaweekly@yahoo.com

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WEMA BANK 5 FOR 5 PROMO SEASON 3 GRAND FINALE SET TO HOLD IN LAGOS …N10,000,000 cash prize up for grabs in final draw of the season!

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WEMA BANK 5 FOR 5 PROMO SEASON 3 GRAND FINALE SET TO HOLD IN LAGOS
…N10,000,000 cash prize up for grabs in final draw of the season!

 

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Wema Bank, Nigeria’s foremost innovative bank and pioneer of Africa’s first fully digital bank, ALAT, is set to wrap up the season 3 edition of its remarkable reward initiative, the 5 for 5 Promo, in a grand finale slated for Friday, May 31, 2024, in Lagos.

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Wema Bank 5 for 5 Promo is a reward initiative introduced by the Bank in 2019 with the goal of rewarding its customers for their active loyalty to the brand and its products. Through the 5 for 5 Promo, customers of the Bank have enjoyed financial support for their personal, business and professional life. Executed via thoroughly regulated monthly draws per season, the Wema Bank 5 for 5 Promo through a raffle draw selects winners from the Bank’s pool of active and transacting customers, based on the minimum requirements and modalities of the season. A total of 1,177 customers have received cash rewards of up to N63.3 million in the first 2 seasons of the Promo; 23 of whom emerged millionaires in season 1 and 2. The 5 for 5 Promo has since become a beacon of hope to millions of Nigerians and businesses across the country.
Season 3 of the 5 for 5 Promo kickstarted in July 2023, raising the bar impressively with a N90,000,000 cash prize that surpassed both preceding seasons, creating room for more Nigerians to become winners. With each month in the 10-month spread, the 5 for 5 Promo Season 3 train has toured different locations across Nigeria, surprising customers with cash prizes ranging from N25,000 to N1,000,000 each. The 5 for 5 Promo stands out for its inclusivity, diversity and impact, touching the lives of hundreds of Nigerians of different ages, statuses, interests and inclinations. As the final draw of the season approaches, both past and aspiring 5 for 5 Promo winners eagerly anticipate the lucky 120 winners to be made this May.
Referencing the Bank’s intention for the 5 for 5 Promo, the Head, Brands & Marketing Communications at Wema Bank, Mabel Adeteye, expressed gratitude to customers of the Bank for their continued support throughout Wema Bank’s 79-year journey. “At Wema Bank, our world revolves around our people and customers. Their support is what has got us this far so it’s only natural that we seize every opportunity to give back to them and fulfil our goal of providing optimum value for every stakeholder. The 5 for 5 Promo was birthed from a place of gratitude and commitment to empowering our customers and with each season, we have simplified the requirements and amplified the rewards to ensure that everyone can benefit from the Promo. Season 3 has been nothing short of remarkable and as we close out our 79th anniversary celebration with one more 5 for 5 Promo Season 3 draw, we are honoured to be the bank of choice for our diverse customer base. To the 1,000+ customers that have won over the past 9 months and the 120 that will win in the grand finale, I say a huge congratulations. Thank you for choosing Wema Bank”.

 

 

 

Encouraging Nigerians to take advantage of the last draw of the 5 for 5 Promo Season 3, Mabel Adeteye, elucidated the minimum requirements for qualification. “The requirements are simple, fund your account with at least N5,000 and make up to 5 transactions using the ALAT App, *945# or your ALAT/Wema Card, maintaining a N5,000 minimum average account balance. It doesn’t matter where you are, what you do or when you started banking with us, you can be a winner. NYSC members have won, business owners, undergraduate students, working class professionals, everyone from Gen Z to the baby boomers—there’s room for all in the Wema Bank family and the 5 for 5 Promo. A simple download of the ALAT App could be the first step for potential winners. I look forward to May 31st, as we put the final bow on this exceptional journey that has made the 5 for 5 Promo Season 3 a success”.

 

 

 

The 5 for 5 Promo has transformed the lives and experiences of thousands of Nigerians across the world, with cash prizes for transactions on both Naira and Domiciliary accounts. With a total of N80,000,000 already disbursed in the first 9 draws of Season 3, the grand finale is set to reward 120 more Nigerians with a N10,000,000 cash prize.
To qualify to win in the grand finale of the Wema Bank 5 for 5 Promo Season 3, Wema Bank account holders are to fund their Wema/ALAT accounts and make up to 5 transactions before the month ends.

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Aviation Minister Explores Partnerships at Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh

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Aviation Minister Explores Partnerships at Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh

 

 

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The Honourable Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo SAN CON FCIarb (UK), is actively engaging with Middle East aviation leaders at the ongoing Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Hosted at the prestigious King Abdulaziz International Conference Center (KAICC), the forum marks a pivotal moment for global aviation collaboration.

At the behest of His Excellency Jassim Saif Ahmed Al-Sulaiti, Minister of Transport of the State of Qatar, and His Excellency Saleh Al-Jasser, Minister of Transport and Logistics of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Aviation Minister convened on the sidelines to deepen ties between Nigeria and the Middle East in the realm of air transportation and logistics.

The third edition of the Future Aviation Forum, themed “Elevating Global Connectivity,” underscores the importance of fostering innovation, sustainable air travel, and cultural exchange. By bringing together leaders from the aviation sector and adjacent industries, the forum serves as a catalyst for knowledge exchange and business opportunities in a dynamic economic sector.

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Keyamo expressed gratitude to Minister Al-Sulaiti for his keen interest in Nigeria, affirming Nigeria’s openness to investment in civil aviation and other sectors of the economy. Emphasizing the importance of learning from Qatar’s success in airline operations, particularly exemplified by the global acclaim of Qatar Airways, the Minister sought collaboration to enhance Nigeria’s aviation sector.

A key proposal made by the Nigeria Aviation Minister involves encouraging Qatar Airways to patronize local catering services on its return trips to Doha from Nigeria. This initiative aligns with the principles of reciprocity outlined in the Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) and aims to stimulate Nigeria’s local economy.

As the Future Aviation Forum continues until May 22, 2024, the Minister remains committed to forging strategic partnerships that will elevate Nigeria’s aviation industry on the global stage.

 

Aviation Minister Explores Partnerships at Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh

Tunde Moshood
SA Media and Communications to the Honourable Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development

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Abba Yusuf and His Misadventure in Kano* By Aliyu Maina

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*Abba Yusuf and His Misadventure in Kano*

By Aliyu Maina

Oh, our majestic Kano! A land renowned for its rich history, resilient hustle, and unwavering hope. Alas, a dark and foreboding shadow has descended upon our beloved city, casting a pall of despair over its inhabitants. This ominous shadow is the result of a man’s broken promises and misguided leadership, a man who pledged to usher in an era of prosperity but instead unleashed unmitigated chaos upon us.

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This individual, Abba Yusuf, our governor, a stranger in our midst, callously disregards the plight of our city as it burns, his actions a stark betrayal of the trust placed in him. For the sons and daughters of Kano, the past few years have been an interminable ordeal of suffering and shattered dreams, a direct consequence of Abba Yusuf’s governance. Our once-thriving metropolis, teeming with life and commerce, has been reduced to a desolate ghost town, a mere shadow of its former vibrant self.

Abba Yusuf, a man who professed to bring prosperity, has instead inflicted upon us a reign of unrelenting hardship. He dons the guise of a leader, but beneath this façade lies a puppet manipulated by invisible forces, ensnared in a sinister political game of power and control. His actions have brought our city to its knees, leaving its people to suffer the consequences of his misguided leadership.

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As a Kano indigene, I am compelled to express my deep disappointment and anguish at the actions of Governor Abba Yusuf, who has utterly failed to prioritize the welfare of the poor masses in our beloved state. His tenure has been marked by a series of misguided decisions that have inflicted immense suffering on the very people he swore to protect.

You see, I have lived in Kano for over 50 years. I’ve seen governors come and go, each with their own vision for our beloved city. But Abba Yusuf? He’s a different breed altogether. He came in with a broom, they said, sweeping away corruption. But instead of sweeping away the dirt, he ended up uprooting the very foundations of our lives.

The first blow came barely a week into his tenure as Governor when he revoked the certificate of occupancy of several properties, claiming they had been acquired illegally from the previous administration. With nary a thought for the countless families who called these properties home, he ordered their demolition. The dust had barely settled when he delivered yet another blow – the suspension of thousands of civil servants employed by his predecessor, Gadunje, on the shaky premise of false recruitment allegations. Which has left countless families without a breadwinner. Thousands of families left jobless overnight. How do you explain that to a man who just put his children through school, hoping for a brighter future, only to see it snatched away by the stroke of a vindictive pen? This callous move has exacerbated poverty and hardship, pushing many to the brink of despair.

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The actions of Abba Yusuf have not gone unnoticed. The Federal High Court, first in Abuja and then in Kano, ordered the Kano State Government to pay hefty sums in compensation for the unlawful demolition of properties, further proving the government’s egregious violation of fundamental rights. But has he paid? Not a kobo. Court orders? Pah! Yusuf cared little for the law.

However, these court orders represent a hollow victory for the victims. They are but a small salve on the deep wound inflicted by a ruler who has lost touch with the people he promised to serve. Rather than uplift our city to the heights of prosperity he promised, Abba Yusuf has left Kano in ruins. The rubble of demolished buildings is a stark reminder of the homes and livelihoods that have been lost. People who’d saved for years, invested their life savings – their dreams turned to dust. The man who promised to clean up Kano has become the biggest stain on our city’s reputation. Thousands have been directly and indirectly affected by his actions, their lives upturned without warning or justice. Tears flow in the streets of Kano, a once proud city brought to its knees by a man lost in the labyrinth of political games. The cries of the poor and disenfranchised echo through the city, a haunting reminder of the promise of prosperity that was but a fleeting illusion.

It is a bitter pill to swallow, realizing that the man at the helm of our city’s destiny is far removed from the realities on ground. Instead of using the opportunity God has given him to guide Kano towards a brighter future, Abba Yusuf seems set on a course that only deepens our despair. In the face of this adversity, the spirit of Kano remains unbroken. Instead of using the state’s resources for the good of the people, Abba Yusuf has been busy gallivanting around, using the state’s funds to hunt down political oppositions and past administration leaders.

This, my friends, is not the Kano we know. The Kano we know, is the city that embraced all, and gave opportunities to those who strived. Yusuf has turned it into a place of fear, a place where the powerful prey on the weak. We, the ordinary people, the ones who make Kano tick – we are the ones suffering. Yusuf, blinded by his vendetta, has forgotten his duty. He’s become a puppet in a political play, more interested in settling scores than serving the people. He promised prosperity, but delivered misery. Promised hope, but brought despair.

We are a resilient people, forged in the crucible of hardship but never bowed. We continue to hope for a leader who will truly serve the interests of the masses, a leader who will lead us out of this darkness and into the light of a prosperous future. Until then, we bear witness to the misadventure of Abba Yusuf, a man clearly lost in the intricate web of politics, using his position to punish the very people he swore to serve. In the end, we, the people of Kano, are the true custodians of our city’s destiny. We will rise from these ruins, stronger and more united than ever, holding onto the hope that one day, justice will be served. Until then, we stand firm, refusing to be silenced, our voices echoing through the heart of Kano, a testament to our resilience in the face of adversity.

As a Kano person, I have witnessed firsthand the anguish and despair that Abba Yusuf’s actions have caused. His policies have punished the poor, rewarding only his political allies. We, the people of Kano, won’t stay silent. We will raise our voices, louder than the roar of the bulldozers. We will not let him turn our city into rubble. We will fight for the Kano we know and love, the Kano that gave us a future.

On behalf of the thousands of Kano people who have suffered this hardship, I say, “enough is enough”. We demand justice and an end to this misadventure, lest our beloved Kano be reduced to nothing but rubble and tears. This is our story. The story of a city betrayed. The story of a people yearning for a leader, not a destroyer. The story of Kano, waiting to rise from the ashes.

Maina, an anthropologist wrote this piece from Gidan Kofar, Kano.

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