APCON embarks on industry reform, set to change its name

By Kasim Bakare

Feelers emanating from the Registrar, Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria(APCON), Dr. Lekan Fadolapo have indicated that the apex regulatory body of advertising has put modalities in place to change its name  in furtherance of the advertising industry reform.

Dropping the hint in an interview with MARKETING EDGE, Dr. Fadolapo noted that the legal framework for the change of name of the regulatory agency has reached an advance stage at the National Assembly. He further explained that the move was necessary to give the regulatory body the force of the law to holistically carry out its statutory regulatory duties.

“We have been pushing for a review of the laws impeding our operation as the regulatory agency of advertising in Nigeria. Despite initial setbacks, we have recorded some successes and the laws have gone through public hearing and stages of law-making. The National Assembly is supporting us and we are sure that by the special grace of God, before the end of this year, the law review supporting corporate licence regime would have been completed.

Continuing, he said:”When the new law is passed, we will be changing our name from Advertising Practitioners’ Council of Nigeria(APCON) to Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria. What this means is that our space will cover advertising in all its ramifications”.

The APCON registrar also spoke about the corporate licence regime put in place as part of the industry reform aimed at improving value delivery, and protecting the interests of stakeholders in the advertising value chain.

“In 2012, the advertising industry approved a proclamation that introduced the licence regime as part of the industry reform. Nine years after, we are still struggling with that reform. Last year, I made a presentation to the Honourable Minister of Information on several issues concerning the industry. One of the good things that will happen to this industry is for us to have full implementation of the industry reform

According to the highly cerebral APCON helmsman, the licensing regime would help ultimately in promoting local content, and in addition, ensure that proper sanctions are given when and where necessary, especially in financial transactions in the industry and to promote the welfare of employees in marketing communication firms..

“The National Assembly is supporting us to review laws on corporate licence regime and we are sure that by the special grace of God, before the end of this year, the law review supporting corporate licence regime would have been completed”.

He added:” One of the few things we are doing now as part of our corporate licence requirement is to evaluate the remittance of pension by advertising agencies to government. This means that you cannot employ your staff as an agency without contributing your statutory contribution to government so that it will be deducted. So, when the staffs are leaving, they have something to fall back on. For the employees, we will protect them, for the employers, we will prepare them for the expectation. For the people that are coming to the industry, they can see a better future”.

The APCON boss noted that advertising industry has undergone a lot of transformation ranging from the effect of digital implosion and  fast changing rules governing the practice of advertising in Nigeria and beyond.





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