We are not operating in Vacuum- APCON’s Acting Registrar

The Acting Registrar of the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), Mrs. Ijedi Iyoha has disclosed that the regulatory body is not operating in vacuum since the former Registrar, Alhaji Garba Bello Kankarofi completed his tenure of appointment.

Practitioners had wondered what the state of Advertising Regulation would be until a substantive Registrar is appointed by a duly constituted Governing Council.

Iyoha emphasized that she is determined to carry on from where her predecessor left off to raise the bar in Advertising Regulation in the country.

However, she pointed out that the absence of APCON Council is affecting the full operation of the body which also includes the appointment of a substantive Registrar and the constitution of the statutory panels charged with the disciplinary measures for erring practitioners. In the meantime, she would closely work with Advertising Stakeholders to see that the Advertising industry is adequately regulated.

“For now, we don’t have a Governing Council, the Governing Council was dissolved in accordance with the directives of the Presidency in 2015. What operates is that the governing council appoints the Registrar who holds office on such terms and conditions as council may, with the approval of the minister determine. But as it is now, the outgone Registrar handed over to the most senior staff officer of the council in acting capacity, in compliance with the directives of appropriate authority, pending when a substantive Registrar is appointed.

“So, in the absence of a governing Council, the approval of the Honourable minister of information and culture is directly sought when and where necessary.” she disclosed.

Speaking on her plans, Iyoha said, “I will like to continue from where the former Registrar, Alhaji Kankarofi stopped, that is moving the industry forward, ensuring Advertising Practitioners abide by the code, ensuring that as the watchdog of the consumers, they are not misled and also as the conscience of the society, ensure that things are done the way they should be done”.

On effort to resolve issues relating to the recent appointment of a council, she explained that Advertising industry stakeholders wrote to the federal government on the important need to put into consideration the provisions of the Advertising Practitioners (Registration Act), as regards the composition of members of the governing council.

On issues like media debt, entry of foreign practitioners without APCON license and others, she said APCON would continue to engage with stakeholders, monitor the industry and ensure that all abide by the code.

“That issue of media debt, I remember there was a time we had an adhoc committee which was called the APCON special committee on Debt Issues (ASCOMDI) that looked into it and they were able to resolve it to a reasonable conclusion. Most people, as at the time they were resolving it, did not even have any evidence that they were being owed. Matters of those that had evidence were treated and if such comes up again, we may have to establish a similar committee that will be saddled with the responsibility to handle it. ”


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