AAAN walks the talk, churns out anti-corruption,terrorism campaigns to support govt

AAAN President, Kelechi Nwosu
There are strong indications of renewed nation building efforts since the inception of the current government led by President Muhammadu Buhari.  In the light of this, the leadership has left no one in doubt on its seriousness and devoted attention to rid the nation of corrupt officials and practices in and out of offices.  

However, laudable as the idea sounds, there has been a high degree of  disenchantment among the populace in view of the economic hardship being experienced by the generality of the population. 
Speaking recently at an interactive session recently especially as it concerns handling dissenting voices and uncooperative attitudes in the affairs of the nation, the President of the Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria, AAAN and Managing Director, TBWA Concept, Mr. Kelechi Nwosu, explained that noncommittal and unbelief attitude may be purely a communication challenge which termed as “a missing link” the government is yet to proffer a logical solution. 
As a result of this critical missing link, the AAAN President reasoned the country is so divided: divided along tribal lines, political lines, religious lines etc. “We believe therefore that we need to have a campaign to unify us”. The Ministry of Information being the main communication curator for government, he advised should engage in research and insight based communication. 
“I think this is the time to talk up the Nigerian brand. I think this is the time to ask what will inspire Nigerians”. This is necessary because as the fight against corruption rages, a lot of people are sad and wondering, “how much money was stolen/lost?” whilst they are facing economic challenges”.
The AAAN President believed this is the most appropriate for the Federal Government to consider a proper and deliberate campaign, working with the right communication professionals, to determine what can we do to inspire the Nigerians to be positive about the country?  “We need to look at what to do to make sure people have great hope in this country. The Information Minister and its machinery need to dig deeper and find out from the professionals, especially from our sector how this can be done”, he asserted. 
In a bid to walk the talk without being bugged down government’s unhealthy bureaucracies, the AAAN has created a campaign to support campaign against current security challenges and terrorism.   “As AAAN we agreed that our country needed to have a campaign that will unify and motivate a lot of us to support the war against terrorism” revealed the AAAN President. 
So, working with some of its corporate members, AAAN developed a campaign aimed at supporting the war against terrorism: mobilise, inspire, and motivate Nigerians to join the war against the violence going on especially in the North Eastern part of the country. 
Although, the campaign is yet to be exposed, the AAAN hinted that it is an integrated campaign that will support this whole war against terrorism using very effective media to deliver the message and solicit support of Nigerians for the government. 
Not minding the fact that the Minister of Information as the APCON/AAAN  supervising minister is yet to meet with AAAN, the association has gone ahead to share the association’s set out objectives for the campaign with the federal Ministry of Information and Culture. “We hope that they have looked at it and will deploy it or integrate along with the campaign commissioned by the ministry. We have also continually offered to the Ministry of Information our capabilities as the foremost creative and communication association in the country and we hope that they will listen to us and partner with us to build effective campaigns to support government’s policy directions”, enthused the AAAN no 1 man.
Nwosu and his team as thoroughbred professional further explained that the government needs a  behaviour change campaign hinged on deep, resonant insights and expertise while the creative work also needs  to be pre-tested suggesting that the government has to be deliberate in designing these campaigns otherwise they will not be effective. 
While he hopes the government picks interest in the project because it is an “elected government that has been elected to lead us, work with us and to help us as a country”, Nwosu was quick to assert that his association and its other partners (ADVAN,OAAN, MIPAN, BON) will not hesitate to go ahead with the implementation even when the government chooses to look the other way.  “We will still go ahead because we are doing it for the country which belongs to all of us. It is very important that everybody does something in these tough times to support the government. That is what we believe in in the association”, he affirmed.
In a related development, The AAAN President warned that the narrative for the country must change.. For instance, he pointed out a recent story of a Nigerian, Bennett Omalu, who studied in University of Nigeria, Nsukka, who went to America and discovered CTE. “We can use such stories to change the narrative here and abroad about Nigeria”, he said while adding that the country needs stories that inspire us as a nation and that will unify our energies to make progress and strike the sweetspot amongst Nigerians to make them believe in themselves and the country.
Alluding to Mr. Udeme UFot, a former president of the association’s  paper on Strategic Communication and National Development,  Nwosu advised that Governments should use the same principles of Marketing Communication that have built big brands over the years, to build her communication.  “We need to have a strategic direction that engages the audience: The Governments (Federal, State and Local Governments) need to speak with the people not the current style of more or less speaking at them. Strategic communication involves aligning our vision with the communication that will help build the nation”. One of those should be about unity and belief in the country.
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