By Mukhtar Ya’u Madobi
Among the personalities vying for council membership in the upcoming Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, NIPR is Mr. Afolabi Olajuwon.
My first encounter with Mr. Olajuwon was in 2021 when I left Kano for Abuja with the zeal and passion to learn the art of journalism and communication.
Having deeply rooted my science background right from secondary up to university level, I had a phobia of how I would adjust into my newly chosen career.
However, my fear was doused and the job was made easier through a God-sent Messiah in the person of Mr. Olajuwon, a Fellow of NIPR who was one of the versatile resource persons at the International Institute of Journalism, Abuja- a training wing of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ.
Considering Mr. Olajuwon as my mentor, in less than a period of a year, I was able to grasp the knowledge of underlying principles of journalism, public relations and advertising campaigns under his tutelage.
The rest afterward is now history as I am now a practicing journalist with PR skills as well as being admitted as an Associate member of NIPR through his mentorship.
I was recently opportuned to have an audience with Mr. Afolabi where shared his vision for NIPR with me once he got elected as one of its Council members in the forthcoming elections.
Mr. Olajuwon is an academic erudite with a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communication from the University of Lagos and a Master’s Degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, Zaria.
A seasoned public information officer, he has over a decade teaching experiences on PR and Journalism Disciplines.
At the International Institute of Journalism, he teaches postgraduate students courses on principles of Public Relations, Mass Media & National Development as well as Advertising Campaign, Planning and Execution.
As an NIPR member, Mr. Olajuwon had served the FCT chapter in various capacities, including the Auditor, Financial Secretary, and Examiner.
The experiences he garnered not only deepened his understanding of the profession, but also equipped him with invaluable insights into the needs and aspirations of NIPR members at the grassroots level.
At the national level, he served as the Secretary of the Restructuring Committee which afforded him the opportunity to contribute to the development and implementation of crucial reforms within NIPR.
He gained a considerable wealth of experience in navigating complex decision-making processes, fostering collaborations, and ensuring that the voices of all members were heard and duly considered.
While justifying the motives for his candidature, the accomplished PR expert said: “If elected a council member, I will commit to advocating for a strong Leadership and Mentorship policy within NIPR. I firmly believe in the power of leadership succession planning and the cultivation of future leaders within our organization.
“By implementing a robust leadership and mentorship program, we will create an enabling environment for aspiring professionals to thrive, foster continuity in our mission, and ensure the sustained growth and success of the institute and its members.” Afolabi added.
In his thematic objectives for NIPR, Mr. Olajuwon listed them as follows: Leadership Succession and Mentorship; Advocacy for the Profession; Continuous Professional Development and Strengthening Regional and International Collaborations.
With his academic background, experience serving at both the chapter and national levels, and a clear vision for the future, Mr Olajuwon would surely defend and advocate the interests of NIPR and its members.
I pray the NIPR family will vote for Mr. Afolabi as one of the council members of the institute.
Mukhar Yau Madobi is a Staff Writer with the Emergency Digest.