The Nigerian Army said it has increased investment in public relations, promising to place premium on the training and retraining army spokespersons.
Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman stated this at the inauguration of the Strategic Communication Course (SCC) 01/2016 of the Nigerian Army School of Public Relations and Information (NASPRI).
“Today, we are witnessing the inauguration of the pioneer Strategic Communication Course 1/2016. This is a feat that is highly commendable in view of the fact that NASPRI despite obvious limitation has kept faith with its mandate of training highly competent and professional public relations practitioners for the Nigerian Army and other Services.
“Let me at this point, express our sincere gratitude to the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General TY Buratai, for his magnanimity and timely intervention in the school through the release of take-off grant which was used to construct and equip a befitting studio in this school. The structure though very compact, comprises a radio studio, photo and video editing suite with state of the art equipment, in addition to the provision of a 50KVA generator. It is our hope that very soon the COAS will formally commission these projects,” he said.
Usman added that the Nigerian Army School of Public Relations and Information (NASPRI), has remained focused in training officers and soldiers of the Directorate and sister Services, to meet the need for well trained and skilled manpower.
“At its formative years NASPRI has been running Young Officers’ Course (YOC), to cater for training and development of newly commissioned officers of the Directorate who are seen as green horns in the practice of military public relations and thereafter, the Media Operations Officers’ Course (MOOC) which is equivalent to Platoon Commander’s Course designed to further enhance the capacity of officers in the junior cadre.
“To further keep abreast with the career development and progress of officers and the need for capacity and career development, NASPRI introduced Advanced Public Relations Course (APRC) and Strategic Communication Course (SCC) which are equivalent to Company and Battalion Commanders courses respectively. Your course which is the first of its kind is designed to further enhance your professional competencies as you take up more strategic command and staff appointments in various formations of the Nigerian Army and other joint operations of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other international military engagements. It is hoped that this course will make the desired impact on you and elicit cross fertilization of ideas, healthy debates among the participants. It is our desire also to see at the end of the course, we turn out better informed senior officers well equipped to participate in making strategic decisions that could be used to resonate key messages for the Nigerian Army’s in information management”, he stated.
He expressed gratitude to the Department of Army Training and Operations (DATOPS) for graciously approving the courses, rescheduling the SCC and for providing the enabling platform for effective training in the school.
He said the directorate of army information is restructuring in line with current realities.
“I wish to further state that the Headquarters of the Directorate of Army Public Relations is making effort on the restructuring to conform with current realities and new developments in our noble profession. To that effect, we have sought the consent of the higher authority of renaming the Directorate and bring about other changes that would open up the space and bring about other specialization”, he added.