The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Lucky Irabor has urged military spokespersons to continue to leverage on the various communication techniques and platforms to tell the story of the Armed Forces of Nigeria in order to gain the trust and confidence of the civilian populace. The CDS gave the charge today Friday 5 November 2021 during a one day capacity building workshop for Public Relations and Information Officers in the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) held in Abuja.
The workshop themed, “Proactive Conflict Sensitive Communication and Defence Information: Emerging Issues and Strategies in Media Relations,” was organized by Defence Headquarters (DHQ) in conjunction with The Media Today International.
Gen Irabor who was represented by the Chief of Defence Policy and Plans, Air Vice Marshal Dahiru Sanda, stressed the need for military spokespersons to be proactive in their media engagements. He explained that when the military dominate the media space, it will help in deterring current and potential adversaries and also mitigate misinformation and disinformation of military operations.
The Defence Chief also noted that the workshop was part of the deliberate resolve by the current leadership of the Nigerian Armed Forces in ensuring that public relations and information officers are able to meet up with current and future realities of defence information management.
These according to him, include the evolving techniques and strategies in media relations.
Gen Irabor commended the Directorate of Defence Information and Services Public Relations and Information Departments for their steadfastness in the management and projection of security information towards galvanizing public support for military operations.
He maintained that kinetic and non-kinetic campaigns are simultaneously deployed by military in it’s quest to surmount security threats. He further urged military spokesmen and women to continue to foster a more positive relationship between the media.
The Deputy Director of Defence Information (DDDI), Air Commodore Wap Maigida in his welcome remarks, said the workshop was tailored towards equipping the participants on rudiments involved in proactive conflict sensitive communication and defence information. The DDDI averred that the available media tools, channels and techniques are panacea which the Nigerian military could use to effectively tell its stories to the right audience. Air Cdre Miagida while disclosing that the military in synergy with other security agencies are recording successes in the theatres of operation, said the workshop would also help the participants to effectively conduct media analysis of these operations.
Meanwhile, the lead paper titled, Conflict Sensitive Communication delivered by Dr Okey Ikechukwu, former Chairman of Guardian Newspaper. The Chief Executive Officer of PR Nigeria, Alhaji Yushau Shuaib spoke on Issue Management and Fact Checking in Media Relations, Mrs Olubukola Akinlade spoke on the Analysis of Media Perception of the Armed of Nigeria.
Mr Philemon Adjekuko spoke on the Media, Defence, Information and Human Right Report, while Barrister Charles Odenigbo lectured on Measuring the Effectiveness of Media Relation Tools and Strategies.
The interactive session was moderated by the Director of Defence Information, Major General Benjamin Sawyerr, Mr Emmanuel Ebhodaghe and Mr Jide Ojo.
for Director Defence Information
5 November 2021