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The London School of Public Relations is launching in Nigeria

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After months in the making, the London School of PR (LSPR) Nigeria has been launched and will be offering a variety of courses including Fundamentals of Public Relations diploma programmes, and other shorter courses focusing on brand building, reputation and risk management. The courses will be delivered by World-class trainers from Europe, the USA and Nigeria.

These courses are being offered at a specially discounted price for all starter courses. LSPR Nigeria is a partner company to the London School of PR in the UK.

The London School of Public Relations has been delivering world-class training in the UK and globally since 1993. The School is recognised in academia and the PR industry as one of the finest training establishments in PR.

The school was founded by Professor John Dalton, biologist, communications specialist and UK business leader.  He commented: “I and my team in London are delighted that this initiative has finally come to fruition.  We believe the school will be very successful in Nigeria given the position of the country in terms of its GDP, economic growth and educated workforce. We already have a successful operation in Ghana and expect our Nigerian business will be equally fortunate.”  LSPR Nigeria is headed by entrepreneur Charles Edosomwan, who has led advertising and digital marketing company Teksight Edge for the past 8 years using data and technology to drive brand engagement and customer acquisition.  He said: “I am excited to be leading LSPR in Nigeria and I am looking forward to delivering our first courses next month.  We have a team of excellent trainers who are experienced in both the virtual and the traditional classroom environments. The PR Landscape in Nigeria suffers from competency and standard issues especially with regards to professionalism and barrier to entry. We have the support of local business leaders and academia to ensure that professionals and business people in Nigeria can have access to world class training.”

Public relations and reputation management have grown exponentially in Nigeria.  The discipline is considered key to business success, and many senior PR executives across the country are key advisors to their boards of directors and strategic management.

Today, public relations professionals must understand finance, management, public affairs, social media, risk management, and technology. They need to keep their pulse on international affairs as well. LSPR Nigeria will be an excellent approach to the growth and development of PR in the country. PR is considered a highly desirable career option, but up to now, there are very few reputable institutions in the country offering accredited courses. An institution as reputable as LSPR and accredited by the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in the UK is bound to add real value to help individuals and organisations employ effective methods to solving issues in business.

LSPR Nigeria will deliver practical and thought-provoking training initially virtually and later in the traditional classroom environment in Lagos and Abuja. Port Harcourt will follow in 2023.

For more information, visit https://lspr.ng/ or send a mail to [email protected]

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Stocks Post Highest Daily Loss in 11 Months After CBN’s Rate Hike

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stock markets investing Invest in Stocks

The decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to increase the monetary policy rate (MPR) to 13.0 per cent from 11.5 per cent on Tuesday after its third Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting for the year had a spiral effect on local stocks.

At the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited yesterday, the action of the central bank in two years further dampened the mood of investors, who, upon receiving the news, embarked on a selling spree.

This put pressure on the exchange as it shed 1.82 per cent, the highest it has lost in a single trading session in almost a year (11 months).

Consequently, the All Share Index (ASI) deflated by 961.87 points to 51,949.64 points from 52,911.51 points, while the market capitalisation shrank by N518 billion to N28.007 trillion from N28.525 trillion.

Analysis showed that the bearish mood was across the key sectors of the market as none closed in the green region. The consumer goods index lost 1.21 per cent, the insurance space fell by 1.09 per cent, the industrial goods counter depleted by 0.61 per cent, the banking sector crashed by 0.39 per cent, while the energy index depreciated by 0.32 per cent.

However, the activity chart was green due to the cross deals witnessed in Ecobank and others, causing the trading volume, value and number of deals to rise by 173.48 per cent, 149.79 per cent and 25.54 per cent respectively.

A total of 720.2 million shares worth N8.9 billion were traded in 6,096 deals compared with the 263.3 million shares worth N3.6 billion traded in 4,856 deals on Monday.

Ecobank recorded the highest trades by volume for selling 257.6 million stocks valued at N3.0 billion, Jaiz Bank traded 78.0 million shares worth N69.7 million, Access Holdings exchanged 60.5 million equities worth N605.0 million, UAC Nigeria transacted 52.2 million shares for N673.1 million, while Transcorp sold 31.4 million equities valued at N39.7 million.

Business Post reports that investor sentiment was weak during the session as there were 39 price losers and 17 price gainers led by Japual, which grew by 10.00 per cent to 33 kobo.

Industrial and Medical Gases rose by 9.89 per cent to N10.00, MRS Oil grew by 9.70 per cent to N16.40, Abbey Mortgage Bank appreciated by 9.09 per cent to N1.80, while Academy Press improved by 8.15 per cent to N1.46.

Conversely, Guinness Nigeria recorded the highest decline after it dropped 10.00 per cent to sell at N88.20, Global Spectrum Energy Services lost 9.77 per cent to trade at N2.77, Axa Mansard depreciated by 9.73 per cent to N2.04, Chams went down by 8.70 per cent to 21 kobo, while Veritas Kapital depleted by 8.70 per cent to 21 kobo.

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Only retirees under the old pension scheme need continuous verification – Samuel Abolarin, MD/CEO, NLPC PFA

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Samuel Banji Abolarin

They see it as a usual thing not to report the person’s death and so then the government says that please everybody should come and confirm their status. Whether the government has good intentions or not is a different matter entirely but that is the nature of that arrangement.

How does the new pension arrangement work?

Under the new pension arrangement, the issue of I am alive every year does not arise because you opened an account with a PFA of your choice.

It is like you opening an account with a bank and your money is going into that account every year or every month so now government now believes that its liability towards you does not go beyond what it is contributing to your pension on monthly basis.

Hence, in the new arrangement, the problem you may have in future has to do with you and your PFA, you don’t have anything to do with the government again. So, as a government, if I like I may not even allow you to come to my office because I don’t have anything to do with you again, I am done,

Under the old arrangement, it was never like that, that is the reason I used the word, “till death do us part” to describe the old pension arrangement.

With this new PFA law, you arrange a program withdrawal that is guaranteed for a period of time, you have an account and when the money gets exhausted, (you are on your own). Hence, the issue of come today come tomorrow does not occur, except for the DB schemes.

What are DB Schemes?

Defined Benefit pension schemes are pension arrangements in which the amount you are paid is based on how many years you have been a member of that employer’s scheme and the salary you have earned at the time you that employer or retire.

The nature of a DB (Defined Benefit) scheme is that when somebody’s pension is payable till he dies. If you pay for somebody who is no longer in existence, you are depleting the fund and is a punishment to those that are still alive

So, for anybody under the DB scheme, such an arrangement is still necessary. Then now say look, we want to help this fund so that nobody is a parasite for this fund, we can’t continue to pay somebody that is dead because that arrangement is saying that it is the people that are working that funds the people receiving benefits, so when they retire too another set of people will be working to fund them,

Therefore, we cannot just continue to fund the people that are dead so it is morally right to report to say that this person is deceased please remove his name, it is in the interest of the fund and in the interest of those that are still living.

How do you adopt technology to help make verification easier?

Technology has really assisted in the process of verifying pensioners under the new pension arrangement. With the advent of social media, we have even deployed video calls for some people who live abroad, by calling them, without necessarily saying we are verifying, because many might not want to constantly fill out forms.

Although despite the adoption of technology, pensioners under the old scheme will continue to fill the “I’m alive form” it must be done and you can see the background is just because we are not being sincere if it had been a country where we had good records when someone dies, it will surely be reported but here no we do not have good records of birth not to talk of death.

We understand that the Nigerian population is quite large and our pension penetration is still low. What is your firm doing to improve this?

At NLPC Pension Fund Manager, we have tried to ensure that we establish our presence in most areas in the country. I can say for a fact that currently, we have the highest number of branch networks across the country.

We have 20 branches across the country, not seating on banks. Notably, we have 4 branches and 16 service centres located in strategic areas in the country, all in a bid to bring pension service closer to everyone. Interestingly, we have a service centre in Maiduguri despite the insurgency in the area, and we attend to our customers over there. Currently, we have approximately 40.

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