In his speech, Hon Jide Jimoh extols the virtues of our mothers and advocated for more representation for women in governance. He lamented that women are besieged with a number of challenges of which discrimination is most rife.
“Majority of our men are preoccupied with the notion that decision making is exclusively for the men folk while women are to be instructed on what to do”. He appeals to women to create more interest in the political activities and rise above all hurdles and obstacles to discover themselves so as to occupy their rightful position.
The Executive Chairman, Yaba LCDA, Hon jide Jimoh was among the awardees honoured by The Gazelle News Media Network, Publishers of The Gazelle News.com. The occasion was the first Anniversary Lecture/Gala Night and Awards ceremony which took place at De’Renaissance Hotel, Obafemi Awolowo Road, Ikeja,Lagos.
The topic of the gala night lecture was ON LINE MEDIA: Challenges and Roles in a Development Democracy and the Guest speaker was Senator Babafemi Ojudu, vice chairman, Senate Committee on Public Service and Establishment.
Dignitaries at the occasion were Senator Olanrewaju Solomon, Hon. Agunbiade and Hon. Alawiye King; both members of Lagos state House of Assembly, Hon Muiz Banire, Hon Bola Ilori representing Governor of State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, Chairman, Mosan Okunola LCDA, Chairman, Bariga LCDA among others.
Alhaji Nurudeen Olaitan Akinwunmi received the award on behalf of the Executive Chairman, Yaba LCDA, Hon Jide Jimoh.
Debo Omilani and Alhaji Akinwumi Mr Awotunde and Abel Enikanologbon
Alhaji Akinwumi(left) as he set to receive the award and (right) as he received it.
Group photograph after the award presentation and right Photo with APC, Yaba LGA Chairman (in white)
Dignitaries(left) at the table during the modelling programme
Programme Facilitators Participants at the venue
Participants with the Programme kits Hon Jide Jimoh during his welcome address
Practical demonstration by the Participants
Hon Jide Jimoh as the Grand Patron, The Modelling Academy
Hon Jide Jimoh in a group photograph with the participants.
Hon Jide Jimoh in a group photograph Participants in their training vest
with the dignitaries & facilitators. during the programme.
Hon Jide Jimoh in a group photograph with the participants in their training vest.
The Executive Chairman, Yaba LCDA, Hon Jide Jimoh on Thursday 6th March, 2014 gave out two vehicles to street sweepers and the Environmental Services Department of the council. The presentation ceremony was done in the premises of the council secretariat.
The chairman said the essence of this gesture was part of his administration’s effort geared towards efficiency on the job. The vehicles will enable the staff of two departments concerned to be more efficient and committed to their duty. He enjoined the departments to ensure good maintenance of the two vehicles.
Similarly, the chairman also presented cash assistance amounting to N1.6m to all the 160 graduands of the skills acquisition programme of the council. He advised the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the money to start business of their own. Mrs Balogun, on behalf of the graduands, thanked the Chairman for his gesture and promised that the money would be used wisely.
At the presentation ceremony were Mr Abel Enikanologbon, Supervisor for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Hon Bola Aileru, Supervisor for Environment, Hon Vitua, Special adviser on Revenue Matters, Hon Ojo, Special Adviser on Legislative Matters and Mrs Ogunsowobo, Head Of Department WAPA.
Beneficiaries at the venue of the presentation.
The council Environmental defenders left and Health and Environmental officers.
Bola Aileru during opening prayer Abel Enikanologbon during his welcome address.
Hon Jide Jimoh during his speech One of the graduands as she counted her money.
Cash presentation by Jide Jimoh to the beneficiaries.
Hon Jide Jimoh (left) and Abel Enikanologbon (right) as both presented cash to graduands.
Hon Ojo while presenting cash to the graduands.
Hon Vitua during presentation of cash gift to the graduands.
Mrs ogunsowobo,HOD (WAPA) as she presented cash to the graduands.
Mrs Balogun( left ) presented cash to graduands and (right) said the vote of thanks
Hon Jide Jimoh & Environmental defenders Hon Jide Jimoh during the presentation
Street sweepers received their vehicles Hon Jide Jimoh and Environmental defenders.
It was another landmark achievement as 17 fire Marshal Recruits of Yaba LCDA held their passing out parade at Lagos state Fire service Training school Headquarters, Alausa.
The occasion which was attended by dignitaries , captains of Industries, Leaders from the ruling All Progressive Congress, L GA Chairmen from 13 Local government and Local council Development Areas of Lagos Central Senatorial Districts has in attendance, Hon Commissioner for Tourism and Home affairs, Hon. Mohammed Oyinlomo Danmole
In his welcome address, the controller of Lagos State Fire Service, Mr Fadipe Rasak commended the initiative of Yaba LCDA chairman, Hon Jide Jimoh for setting up Fire service unit, which according to him was the first of its kind in the history of grassroots’ governance in Nigeria. He congratulated the graduands and implored them to be more dedicated to their new assignment. He called on all other Local Government and Local councils in Lagos state to emulate this good initiative.
The chairman of Yaba LCDA, Hon Jide Jimoh gave thanked to Almighty God for making the dream come true. According to the chairman, ‘’ this is the first time in the history of Local Governments in Nigeria that a local government will conceptualize the idea of having a fire station complete with all the requisite infrastructure, apparatus and personnel’’.
He commended the ever-performing and proactive Executive Governor of Lagos State, Barrister Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) and his team for providing able and credible government; the management of Lagos State Fire Service with whom Yaba LCDA have collaborated with in this regard for their absolute cooperation and the training of 17 men of the LCDA who are the pioneer staff of the fire station.
The highlight of the occasion was the practical demonstration of how to handle fire disaster with the use of fire equipments.
Hon Oyin Danmole & Hon Jide Jimoh Hon Danmole, Hon Jide Jimoh & Mr Fadipe
17 recruit fire Marshals during their physical exercise during the passing out parade
Practical demonstration of rescue operation of fire outbreak
Practical demonstration of rescue operation of accident victim
Dir. of fire service during his speech Hon Jide Jimoh while delivering his speech
Alhaji Tajudeen Oluyole Olusi Baba Olusi while delivering his goodwill message
“You can if you think you can. The highest resource you need to excel is yourself and the highest factor that can bring you down is yourself. Conquer yourself and excel beyond imagination”.
- Vincent Norman
“If you don’t build your dreams, someone will hire you to build theirs.”
- Dhirubhai Ambani
P R O T O C O L
From the onset, permit me to announce that today is one of my happiest days since assuming office as Chairman of Yaba LCDA.
Today is witnessing the crystalization of a dream, a supposed pipe dream made a reality; the coming into fruition of something of an illusion; an idea successfully delivered. No doubt, our administration had done quite a number of things in virtually all sectors: education, health, poverty alleviation, training, environment, works and infrastructure and staff matters, but provision of a fire station is one that is quite dear to us and its achievement cannot but excite us.
The excitement generated by this project might not be unfounded. First, this is the first time in the history of Local Governments in Nigeria that a local government will conceptualize the idea of having a fire station complete with all the requisite infrastructure, apparatus and personnel. Arising necessarily from the above was the issue of cost. No doubt, such a project will attract a huge cost.
However, we were resolute in our resolve and fully committed to its actualization reminding ourselves of the wise words of an anonymous writer, “Never mind what others do; do better than yourself, beat your own record from day to day, and you are a success.”
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, we now have in place a full-fledged fire station: fire-fighting trucks, a structure to house the trucks, ready water supply and well-trained and efficient personnel to man the Fire Station.
Our profuse appreciation goes to the ever-performing and proactive Executive Governor of Lagos State, Barrister Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) and his team for providing able and credible government; the management of Lagos State Fire Service with whom we have collaborated in this regard for their absolute cooperation and the training of our men, 17 of them who will be the pioneer staff of the fire station. Today also marks the graduation of these lucky people.
We must also take note of the encouragement given to us by the Controller-General of Fire Service of Nigeria who on learning that we had put in place a fire station, wrote to us, lauding our initiatives and encouraging us. This is a positive and soothing balm indeed.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, kindly permit me to do a run-through of some of the programmes which this administration has successfully embarked upon:
We have among others:-
- Renovated Our Lady of Apostles Primary School
- Renovated All Saints Primary School
- Reconstructed the perimeter fence of Lagos City College, Sabo
- Reconstructed the perimeter fence of Talimum Primary School
- Distributed chairs and tables
- Distributed JAMB and GCE forms free to secondary school students
- provided toiletry infrastructure in all schools
- Provided boreholes to All Saints Primary School
- Renovated the Legislative chambers
- Distributed 7 transformers to needy communities
- Installed 350KVA generator for the use of the Secretariat
- Provided solar lights to our PHC’s and the secretariat
- Erected billboards in all boundaries
ROAD CONSTRUCTION AND REHABILITATION
The under-listed roads were either constructed or rehabilitated:
- Alara Road
- Kofoworola Road
- Church Street, Makoko
- Makoko Road
- McNeil Street
- Olatunde Street
- On-going project of a network of 9 roads around
- Alaka/Bamgbopa culverts
- Sariyu culvert
Among others, we
- Constantly clear and de-silt drains
- Clear Atan Cemetery
- Establish environmental defenders
YOUTH, SPORTS, SOCIAL DEV,SECURITY AND EMPOWERMENT
- Support for the aged: monthly payment of N10,000 to 100 elderly people totaling N1M monthly: N12M a year and N36M in 3 years
- Winning the IBILE games trophy
- Provision of patrol vehicles to Sabo and Adekunle police stations
- Provision of farm produce to 100 widows
- Provision of free handsets to all the street sweepers
- Setting-up of Job Creation and Complaints Desk
- Constant training and re-training of staff
- Training of 50 youths on website design and online marketing in collaboration with Lagos State Government
- Cash donation of N1M to Fire victims at Iwaya and Abule Ijesha
- Provision of utility vehicles to CDC, Market Women and Men Association, Neighbourhood Watch etc.
Here we have done these, among others:
- Construction of Obadina Public Health Centre
- Provision of free ambulance services
- Constant provision of free diabetes and hypertension screening exercise
- Re-filling of first aid boxes with drugs
- Distribution of crutches and wheel chairs to the needy
- Renovation of staff clinic
Permit me to say that most of us have one time or the other, gone out of the shores of this country and seen how local governments are operated. In some of these countries, most of the assignments carried out in Nigeria by the Federal Government are done by their Local Governments. Provision of fire service is one of them.
Local Governments in Lagos State, buoyed and propelled by the superlative governance of the Lagos State Governor, are primed to provide excellent performance. The Federal Government of Nigeria has no business putting its hands in all the things it has been doing. Its share of the revenue of Nigeria could be drastically reduced in favour of the states and local governments for more effective leadership at those levels.
Once again, ladies and gentlemen, gentlemen of the Press, you are welcome to this epoch-making occasion in which Yaba LCDA has again humbly attained the status of being the first local government in Nigeria to build and equip a Fire Station.
Once more, I congratulate today’s graduands. We demand and expect excellent service from you.
Thank you all
God bless you
Eko o Nii Baje o
You are Blessed Always (Yaba)
The administration of Hon Jide Jimoh recently fulfilled one of the promises of developing the youths to be self reliant and independent as Yaba Local Council Development Area enrolled fifty youths for internet business training. The training, which was organised by Dele Moses Foundation, took place at the Lagos State Ministry of Youths and Sports ground at Akinwunmi Street Alagomeji, Lagos.
Participants were exposed to website design and development, internet operations, web engineering, and information technology techniques. The programme held between Monday, 2nd and Friday 6th September, 2013. Certificates of participation were awarded to the participants.
Yaba lens brings to you the pictorial evidences of happenings, events and programme of activities in Yaba LCDA.
FIRE OUTBREAK AT MAC AGOG COMPANY.
The LCDA through its fire- fighting unit was able to timely respond to outbreak of fire in the said company before it got out of hand. The fire fighting vehicle of the LCDA responded to distress calls, raced to the scene and fought tooth and nail to curtail the fire.
The fire was put out before serious damage could be done.
The Executive chairman held an interactive staff session aimed at giving account of his stewardship in the 365 days of his second tenure as the executive chairman. The occasion was also used to call the staff to be more dedicated, committed and hardworking. The forum was also used to announce the introduction of staff revolving loan which replaced the former welfare fund.
HANDING OVER OF PATROL VEHICLES TO SECURITY OPERATIVES.
The administration is committed to the protection of lives and properties of the people of Yaba; and in order to ensure that security operatives live up to their responsibility and be responsive, two security patrol vehicles were presented to both Adekunle and Sabo Police stations.
DISTRIBUTION OF CHAIRS AND TABLES TO PRIMARY SCHOOL TEACHERS.
Making learning more attractive and conducive to both the teachers and pupils in primary Schools in the LCDA became imperative to the administration. Therefore, in order for the teachers to be more dedicated and committed to their teaching assignment, the administration provided sitting furniture to all primary school teachers in the LCDA.
DISTRIBUTION OF NOODLES AND SCHOOL BAGS TO PUPILS.
Pupils in primary schools in the LCDA were given Noodles and customised school bags by the Executive chairman, Hon Jide Jimoh.
LAGOS STATE NULGE PRESIDENT IN THANK YOU VISIT TO THE LCDA.
The re-elected lagos State NULGE president, Comrade Lasisi Ayinde Akinsanya was on a thank you visit to Yaba LCDA. He and his new executive members were received by the chairman in his office before a grand reception that took place at Oluremi Tinubu hall.
INDISCRIMINATE PARKING IN YABA
The menace of indiscriminate parking by commercial danfo drivers in Yaba received the attention of Hon Jide Jimoh as he and his environmental team embarked on operation ‘NO’ to indiscriminate parking in Yaba. The exercise which began at Makoko Junction and moved down to Yaba bus stop is scheduled to be a continuous one.
- A TEAM OF WATER EXPERTS
Another remarkable event within the period under review was the visit of a team of water experts to the chairman in his office. The purpose was to see areas where the non-governmental group could partner with the LCDA. The focal area of concern to the team was Makoko community. This, according to the chairman was a welcome development as the area depended solely on bore hole water.]]>
The old notion of Public Relations as unpaid advertising, mere propaganda and publicity is fast giving way to Public Relations as an indispensable tool of management.
The Chartered Institute of Public Relations defines Public Relations as ‘the planned and sustained effort to establish and maintain goodwill and mutual understanding between an organization and its public’.
After examining 472 definitions of public relations, Rex Harlow came up with a comprehensive working definition of public relations. According to Harlow (1976) Public Relations is a ‘ distinctive management functions which helps establish and maintain mutual lines of communication, understanding, acceptance and cooperation between an organization and its publics, it involves the management of problems or issues; it helps management to keep informed on, and responsive to public opinion, defines and emphasizes the responsibility of management to serve the public interest; helps management keep abreast of and effectively utilize change, serving as an early warning system to help anticipate trends, and uses research and sound ethical communiqué as its principal tools’’.
Another widely quoted definition of Public Relations is that drawn up at an International Public Relations Conference in Mexico. The Mexican Conference says that “ Public Relations is the Art and Social Science of analyzing trends, predicting their consequences, counseling organization leaders and implementing planned programmes of actions which serve both the organization and the public interest”.
The above definition, according to Kunle Oshodi- Glover, a management expert, shows that “the concern of Public Relations is the creation and sustenance of goodwill among the “Publics” of an organization. It gives careful attention to the cultivation of goodwill for individuals, organizations or corporate bodies”.
Also, Orobiyi Musendiq (1997), in a paper titled: “PR as tool in achieving organizational goals” shows the distinction between public relations as a management concept of administration which is just a set of policies that guide administrators. He asserts further that for an effective performance of public relations experts and for any organization to achieve its set goals and objectives, it must use public relations as both a management concept of administration and as a specialized staff function serving the administrator.
Public Relations executive, according to him, is the ears, eyes, nose and mouth of any organization. As the image maker who relates with the internal and external publics and with all the departments of the organization, who feels their immediate public and implications on the corporate image of the organization, is supposed to be accorded the right recognition as his colleagues in various other professions.
Chuks Osuji in Prof. Egwu’s PR, Mass Media and Politics sees Public Relations as “a process of creating a favorable public opinion for an organization, institution, individual, commodities, or intangible things such as names, so that people who have something to do with them may perceive them in a good way.”
Robert T. Rally, while contributing to the field of Public Relations dwells on what makes a good and ideal Public Relations when he states that “Public Relations, if properly practiced is a profession demanding as many skills and insights as most other professions. It also demands mastery of the art of communication like medicine. It is aimed at presenting unfavorable public opinion in a way to promote goodwill.”
The International Public Relations Association, The Hague, May 1960, defines Public Relations as “ a management function of a continuing and planned character, through which public and private organizations and institutions seek to win and retain the understanding, sympathy and support of those with whom they are or may be concerned by evaluating public opinion about themselves, in order to correlate, as far as possible, their own policies and procedures, to achieve, by planned and widespread information, more productive cooperation and more efficient fulfillment of their common interest.”
In this context, Public Relations can be described as persuading people to accept your ideas, your company’s products or the services, programmes and policy of government establishments in such a way that their next line of action will be in your favor, such as buying your products or by showing positive interest each time your organization is mentioned. In the case of sssss Local Governments, this will serve to engender increased supports of its programmes, and better service delivery to the masses of the people at the grassroots.
Sam Black (1989) also defines Public Relations as “the establishment of two-way communication to resolve conflicts of interest, seeking common grounds or areas of mutual understanding based on truth, knowledge and full information.”
Soluade Oluseun (1977) espousing Sam Black’s definition maintains that “in any organization, people have different interests. Hence, as a Public Relations man, one is bound to face conflicting interests which the practitioner must solve amicably. In doing this, he said Public Relations person must avoid telling lies, and instead, dig information to obtain the truth.”
From the above, it can be induced that Public Relations means everything that aims at establishing understanding based on truth, between an organization and those that come in contact with it both internally and externally.
From all these definitions, it is obvious that Public Relations is involved with how to build reputation, goodwill and support for an organization. Public Relations is a planned and deliberate effort intended to earn and sustain the understanding and goodwill of an organization’s publics. Such organization could be public, commercial or non-commercial.
It should be emphasized that building and sustaining a positive image for an organization which Public Relations is primarily concerned with is not a once-and for-all activity but a continuous process.
The importance of public relations in the success of any organization cannot be over-emphasized. This is because the success or failure of any organization whether private or public depends largely on how it is perceived by its various publics. If an organization is perceived negatively by its relevant publics i.e. staff, customers, suppliers, shareholders, the host community etc., such an organization is bound to fail because it will be unable to secure the requisite goodwill for success. On the contrary, an organization perceived in a positive light will have it easy to secure the understanding and goodwill it needs to survive, grow and accomplish its goals.
EVOLUTION, GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT OF PUBLIC RELATIONS.
The development of Public Relations could be traced to the Second World War period when the Colonial Government established the first Information Office in Lagos with the sole function of disseminating war information.
The name of this office headed by Mr. D.C Fletcher was later changed to Public Relations Office to give it a better image with the objectives to “present a picture of Nigeria to the outside world as well as to assist the government in all activities requiring propaganda.”
The UAC of Nigeria blazed the trail by establishing the first Public Relations Department headed by Mr. Charles E. Newham with the aim of explaining the company’s news and policies to all men and women engaged in general merchandise and produce buying.
From this humble beginning according to Kunle Oshodi-Glover “grew the establishment of Information Departments, later, ministries in various states and Public/ Corporate Affairs Departments in companies and private establishments.
The evolution of Public Relations Office or as it is often called Information Unit in Local Government is of recent origin resulting from the 1976 and 1988 Local Government Reforms which gave room for professionalism in Nigeria.
The Nigeria Institute of Public Relations Decree No. 16 of 1990 stipulates the qualifications and conditions of those qualified to practise public Relations and also frowns at quacks parading themselves as Public Relations practitioners.
POLITICAL ASSERTION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN NIGERIA.
The official Handwork on the Reformed System of Local Government in Nigeria of 1976 defines Local Government as“governance at the local, grassroots level exercised through representative councils established by law to exercise specific powers within a defined area.”
The United Nations’ Office for Public Administration sees Local Governments as “the political sub-division of a nation or (in a federal system) a state, which is constituted by law and has substantial control of local affair including the power to impose taxes and exert labour for prescribed purposes”. Local Government can be defined as a “political authority which is purposely created by law or constitution for local communities by which they manage their local public affairs within the units of the law /constitution.”
The reorganization became effective in September 1976, with the promulgation of the various Local Government edicts by the states. The reforms provided that Local Government Councils should be elected directly. These reforms were intended to stimulate democratic self –government and to encourage intiative and leadership potential.
The resultant effect of the 1976 Local Government reforms has been to make the third-tier of government progressively more mature and autonomous.
In 1974, the Public Service Review Commission, headed by Chief Jerome Udoji examined the structure of Local Government Administration in Nigeria. The recommendations of this commission led to the reforms of 1976.
The guidelines of the reforms were subsequently adopted by all the states of the federation. This led to the establishment of a uniform structure of Local Government in Nigeria.
Similarly, in 1979, Local Governments were entrenched in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as the third-tier of government.
Further to another reform of the administration of Local Government in 1988, leading to the professionalization of all cadres of staff at the third-tier of government level, the Information Units, among other departments and units such as legal and Audit were established.
Various reasons have been adduced by various scholars for the creation and existence of Local Government. Some of these are:
1. The functions of government have become so complex that it should not be left for the central government alone and that the task of development necessarily involves the mobilization of the whole nation.
2. It is suggested that only the Local Government can identify properly the needs of the local communities and plan for the realization of these needs. Linked with this reason is the fact that except the local people are involved in the planning process of some projects, they are bound to fail.
3. The central government is seen as being too far away to appreciate the pressing needs of the rural people. To this extent, the size of the rural areas may not be easily accessible.
4. Local government units are good for civic moral because they help to foster an interest in and responsibility for public affairs.
5. Local governments are meant to satisfy the practical demands of the population for self-government in matters that are not of country-wide concerns e.g. local traffic problems.
Going by the definition of Local Government cited above, there are five (5) main implications.
Firstly, Local Government is a political authority, which implies that it is a level of government vested with legislative and executive laws (bye-laws) and formulates polices.
Secondly, it is created by law or constitution, which defines its structures, functions and powers, sources of revenues, composition etc. Generally, Local Government in Federal system like Nigeria, USA, Canada, Germany, India and Australia is the presence of the constituent unit of the Federation. It is regarded as a creation of the State Government in Federal System or of the central government is unitary system.
However, in Nigeria, with the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1979, Local Government has attained a higher status in which it is now created by the state. There are still sharp divergent views on whose authority rests the creation of Local Governments. While each of the State Houses of Assembly in Nigeria regards this responsibility as their statutory duty, but for the judicial interpretation of the constitution by the Supreme Court which vested the creation and tenure on State Houses of Assembly, the National Assembly would have usurped the power to legislate on the tenure of council chairmen and councilors.
The third implication is that it is the government which is nearest to the people. As such, it feels the greatest impact of the needs and problems of the people.
Fourthly, it is the government by which the local people manage their own affairs.
Fifth implication is that government operates within the law or constitution which created it. The law defines the specific areas and powers within which the local government should operate. However, the powers should be substantial and adequate for it to be a government.
According to the guidelines for Local Government reforms, “these powers should give the council substantial control over local affairs as well as the staff and institutional and financial powers to initiate and direct the provision of services, determine and implement projects.”
FUNCTIONS OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT
The Guidelines for the Local Government Reforms of 1976 recognized Local Governments as third-tier with defined boundaries, clearly –stated functions and provisions for ensuring adequate human and financial resources. The Nigerian Constitution recognizes these functions, some of which are:
a. Formulation of economic planning and development schemes for the local government area.
b. Collection of rates and issuance of Radio and Television licenses.
c. Establishment and maintenance of cemeteries, burial grounds and homes for destitute.
d. Establishment, maintenance and regulation of slaughter slabs, markets, motor parks and public conveniences.
e. Construction and maintenance of roads, street lightings, drains, planks, garden, open spaces, or such public facilities as may be prescribed from time to time by the State Chief Executive or the House of Assembly.
f. Naming of streets and roads, and numbering of houses.
g. The provision and maintenance of primary, adult and vocational schools.
h. Provision and maintenance of health services
i. Control and regulation of :
1. Outdoor advertising and bill boards
2. Shops and kiosks
3. Movement and keeping of pets of all descriptions
4. Restaurants, bakeries and other places for sale of goods to the public
5. Licensing, regulation and control of the sale of liquor
j. Registration of all births, deaths and marriages
k. Assessment of privately-owned houses or tenements for the purpose of collecting rates as may be prescribed by the State Chief Executive or House of Assembly.
ROLES AND DUTIES OF PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT
At the inception of its establishment, the Public Relations Office or the Information unit as it is called at the Local Government level was headed by staff or officers from different disciplines especially from the administration department whose educational background could not be traced to any media-related discipline such as journalism, public relations or mass communication.
However, today, since the promulgation of NIPR Decree Number 16 of 1990 regulating the practice of Public Relations in Nigeria, efforts have been made to recruit as Information Officers in the Local Governments, qualified professionals in Public Relations and other relevant disciplines to head the Information units.
In a paper delivered at a workshop for Local Government Senior Officers held at the University of Ibadan, titled“The Role and Functions of Public Relations Officer in an organization”, Akinleye defines Public Relations Officer as “An employee of an organization recruited by virtue of his qualification and experience to design, implement and manage the public relations activities of such organization. He is to build up an image, maintain and sustain it such that it can last the tides and time. He is also to research, evaluate and control the public relations strategy with a view to updating and improving on it so that the organization can be well packaged and projected.”
He asserted further that before a Public Relations Officer could be effective, he must observe the following:
§ -must have contacts
§ -must have experience
§ -must have insights
§ -must have creative mind
§ -must have imagination
§ -must have faith
§ -must have positive attitude
§ -must have inter-personal skills
§ -must have emphatic attitude
Professor Samuel Black, one of the leading Public Relations experts, highlights 4 major objectives of Public Relations at the Local Government level. These are:
1. To keep citizens informed of Council’s policies and its day-to-day activities
2. To give citizens the opportunity of expressing their views on important new projects before final decisions are taken by the council
3. To enlighten citizens on the way in which the system of Local Government works, and to inform them of their rights and responsibilities
4. To provide a sense of civic pride belonging to the people.
No doubt, both esteemed scholars are right in their description of the duties, rights and expectations of a Public Relations Officer or Information Officer at the Local Government. However, it is extremely imperative that governments at all levels make the job of these spokespersons easy by embarking on projects and programmes that are of immense benefits and which have great impacts on their people.
THE YABA EXAMPLE
Yaba Local Council Development Area as it is today was carved out of the old Lagos Mainland Local Government which was created in 1977 as a separate local government following the national reform of Local Government by the Federal Government in 1976.
Lagos Mainland was itself carved out of Lagos City Council which administered the Lagos Metropolitan city: this consists of Lagos Island and Lagos Mainland. So, with the creation of 3 more local governments on August 27, 1991, the former Lagos Mainland was re-constituted with Surulere carved out of it.
Yaba LCDA is one of the 37 Local Council Development Areas created by the future-looking administration of Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu after the Lagos State House of Assembly passed a law creating new local council development areas.
Yaba LCDA is majorly urban and partly rural hosting the largest number of tertiary institutions in Nigeria. Such institutions include: Yaba College of Technology, University of Lagos, Federal College of Education (Technical), College of Health Technology and Psychiatric Hospital, among others.
Yaba LCDA offers a commendably sparkling ambience and harbors visible marks of development thanks to successive political administrations’ conscious and concerted efforts at ensuring its growth and development. Generally, the performance of Local Governments in Lagos State has undoubtedly justified and silenced critics of the creation of additional local governments. In fact, today, residents of Lagos yearning for more even development are already clamoring for creation of more local governments in Lagos State.
On our part, in the last 4 or so years, we have raised the stake, set the pace and moved the train. In all humility, Yaba LCDA has, under our watch, witnessed an exponential level of growth and development. In practical terms and in order to give teeth to and bring about the realization of our vision of “Moving Yaba to the zenith of greatness”, we set for ourselves 6 broad development goals viz:
1. Improvement on Primary Education
2. Improvement on Health Care Services
3. Environmental/Infrastructural Facilities/Roads Construction and Rehabilitation
4. Empowerment and Poverty Alleviation
5. Security of Lives and Property
6. Human Capacity Development and Staff Welfare
Distinguished listeners, while we would not want to bore you with details of our achievements, kindly permit us to do a synopsis of same since it has to do with the topic of this lecture which talks of development goals of local government, the Yaba example.
In line with the well-known saying of that great patriarch of South Africa, the living legend, Nelson Mandela, that“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”, we have given due attention to the provision of qualitative education for our primary school pupils. Thus, we have undertaken the following projects and programmes:
§ Renovation of All Saints Primary School
§ Renovation of Ladilak Primary School roof
§ Renovation of Our Lady of Apostles Primary School
§ Rehabilitation of City College perimeter fence
§ Rehabilitation of Talimum Primary School perimeter fence
§ Regular distribution of free JAMB forms to students
§ Regular distribution of free GCE forms to students
§ Distribution of customized school bags and exercise books to pupils
§ Distribution of tables, benches and chairs for the use of students and teachers
§ Sponsorship of 40 students to NECOYA (New Era Foundation) holiday camp
We all know that ‘Health is Wealth’. Thus, we have directed enough energy to health matters and have, among others, achieved the under-listed:
§ Construction of Obadina Health Center
§ Distribution of wheel chairs and crutches to physically-challenged people
§ Provision and constant stocking of first-aid boxes in all 33 primary schools
§ Establishment of laboratory services/facilities at Iwaya PHC
§ Re-construction of Ori Oke PHC fence
§ Setting up of free ambulance services
§ Constant free diabetes and hypertension screening exercise
§ Constant free polio immunization exercises
ENVIRONMENT, INFRASTRUCTURE, ROAD CONSTRUCTION/REHABILITATION
The environment plays a critical role in determining the state of health of an individual and the economic well-being of a society. Below is our score card in this area and in provision of infrastructural facilities and roads construction:
- Regular clearing of drains, channels and canals
- Clearing of weeds at Atan Cemetery
- Establishment of Yaba LCDA Environmental Defenders
- Distribution of 7 No 500 KVA transformers to 7 wards within the LCDA
- Establishment of a fire service unit, first of its kind by a Local Government in Nigeria
- Purchase of a 350 KVA generator for the use of the Council Secretariat
- Installation of internet facilities within the Council Secretariat
- Renovation of the Yaba LCDA Legislators’ Chambers
The under-listed roads have either been constructed or rehabilitated:
- Church Street, Makoko
- Olonade Street, Yaba
- Borno Way, Yaba
- Alara Street
- Kofoworola Street
- McNeil Street
- Faneye Street
- Makoko Road
- Olatunde Street
EMPOWERMENT AND POVERTY ALLEVIATION
Taking cognizance of the dictum “Give a man fish, you have fed him for a day, but teach him to fish and you have fed him for life”, we have provided:
- Support for 100 aged people with N10,000 monthly stipend
- Farm produce for 100 widows
- Employment for youths through Yaba Complaints and Job Creation center
- Board appointment for 650 youths
- Establishment of Yaba LCDA Property and Investment Ventures
- Skill acquisition and youth empowerment for 250 youths and women
- Sponsorship of 2 graduates to China for skill acquisition
- Sponsorship of 15 students for a 3-month computer training
- Distribution of free handsets to 105 street sweepers
SECURITY OF LIVES AND PROPERTY
A peaceful society is a sine-qua-non to economic development. In order to assist in the establishment of peace and security, we have, among others, done these:
§ Purchase of patrol vans for the use of Sabo and Adekunle police stations
§ Supply of bullet-proof jackets to policemen
§ Provision of walkie-talkies to Police stations within the LCDA
HUMAN CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT AND STAFF WELFARE
Glyn Machen said “Management has become more about managing people than managing operations; unless we have harnessed the full potential of our people, even the best plans are likely to be less than successful”. Therefore, we have embarked upon:
§ Regular performance-enhancement training programmes for staff
§ Effective communication seminars for senior officers
§ Constant management- staff forums
§ Punctual payments of staff dues
I must not end this aspect of the lecture without mentioning the feat which we achieved in the area of sports, an event that has changed the acronym of Yaba LCDA to ‘Golden Yaba’. Our sportsmen and women did us proud in 2012 by coming first at the Ibile Games (a competition bringing together all Local Governments in Lagos State) and a giant trophy was presented to my humble self by our able governor, Barrister Babatunde Raji Fashola.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, that we have kept faith with our people is reflected in the positive perception trailing our administration. This is to a great extent gleaned from the avalanche of awards which we have received. However, in view of time constraints, we can only mention 2 or 3.
§ Kwame Nkrumah Leadership Award in Administration (By the West African Students’ Union
§ Good Governance Award (By the Forum For Local Government Nurses and Midwives)
§ Outstanding Grassroots Award (By Check Out Magazine, United Kingdom)
Ladies and Gentlemen, in all humility, under our government, Yaba LCDA has experienced tremendous improvement in all sectors. We have given the Public Relations personnel or the Information/ Media unit things that are worthy of being talked about. We have, through our program of activities, carved a niche for ourselves thereby creating a good image for our administration. We constantly hold Town Hall and Stakeholders’ Meetings to get the requisite feedback. We have established a minute-by-minute interaction with the public through our website www.yabagov.org,www.facebook.com/jj pen lab.
This piece will be incomplete if I fail to salute your body-Chartered Institute of Public Relations-for doing a yeoman’s job. Individually, I also commend you for doing a good job. I say without equivocation that you are doing your job with utmost professionalism. This country needs more of your involvement. Nigeria is beset with multifarious, multipronged, deeply rooted problems begging for attention and solutions. Let us all join hands to salvage the country. Let us always remember the words of Leo F. Buscaglia :”Don’t spend your precious time asking ‘Why isn’t the world a better place? It will only be time wasted. The question to ask is: How can I make it better?” Or, better still, in the words of Mahatma Ghandi “Be a change you wish to see in the world”.
I thank you for giving me this rare opportunity.
I thank you for your time.
Eko o ni baje o
The administration having this at the back of its mind has commenced another week- long diabetes and hypertension screening for the people of Yaba and its environs. The exercise which begins today at the council secretariat will go round all the PHCs in Yaba. Below is the time table for the exercise:
Tuesday, 22nd April, 2013 Council secretariat, Adekunle
Wednesday, 24th April, 2013 Oba L A salami PHC, Igbobi sabe
Thursday, 25th April, 2013 Pa Alli Dawodu PHC, Abule Ijesha
Friday 26th April, 2013 Iwaya PHC, Iwaya
Mon-Tue 29 – 30TH April, 2013 Ayetoro PHC.
The Council Chairman, Hon Jide Jimoh enjoined all the people of Yaba to, once again, take advantage of this exercise which is free. According to him,’ with the hustle and bustle of Lagos, the stress generated by the work we do and the nature of the food and drinks we consume, we cannot afford not to do constant checks’ adding ’this is another opportunity to stay healthy as treatment will be provided as well’.
Health staff set for the exercise Members of the public waiting to be attended to
Members of the public registered their names before the exercise
checking of weight section
Test for sugar in the blood (Diabetes) section Blood pressure section
Hon Jide Jimoh arrived at the venue of the exercise for check up
Hon Jide Jimoh doing some checks Hon Jide Jimoh with some health personnel