Chief Fassy Adetokunboh Yusuf was born over fifty years now. In 1974, he secured a Diploma in Journalism from the British School of Journalism and Television, and in 1975, he secured Certificate in Public Relations from the now Chartered British Institute of Public Relations. – Henley Management College/Brunel University between 1982 and 1983 for his Master of Business Administration [M.B.A] degree; and the University of Lagos for his M.Sc. degree in Mass Communication. Not done, Chief Yusuf, attended the then Ogun State University, Ago Iwoye, for Law programme and graduated before proceeding to the Nigerian Law School for the mandatory Bar Certificate Course. He was subsequently called to the Nigerian Bar and enrolled by the Nigerian Supreme Court as Solicitor and Barrister.
In quick succession, he bagged the prestigious Diploma of the Communication, Advertising and Marketing Education Foundation, London; and Diploma of the Chartered British Institute of Marketing. Later, he studied for and obtained the Honours Diploma in Communication Studies from the Communication, Advertising and Marketing Education Foundation; thus becoming the first African to hold such a qualification. He attended the oldest management college in Europe
In our effort to keep the publics adequately informed on topical issues on public relations, PRNigeria is introducing Interview with respected professionals and scholars in integrated marketing communication. In this edition, we bring a chat with Chief Fassy Yusuf as our guest.
He is a FELLOW of over ten professional/academic bodies including the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, Advertising Council of Nigeria, National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria, Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, Institute of Directors and Chartered British Institute of Management. Chief Yusuf, is a MEMBER of over 20 other academic/professional bodies including African Council for Communication Education, World Journalism Education Congress and International Communication Association in USA.
He is totally committed to mentoring and coaching with deep interest for scholarship and learning. He has over 30 years of meritorious cumulative experience working for the Nigeria Police, the media, Public Relations & Advertising organisations, the Manufacturing sector, Federal and State governments, and several national & international agencies. He is an author, writer, media consultant, public relations and advertising consultant, management consultant, publisher, lawyer, etc.
What led you to become a Communication/PR person?
My background as a member of The Press Club, and the Literary and Debating Society of my secondary school – Muslim College, Ijebu Ode, Ogun State. And, much later my posting to the Police Public Relations Department when I joined the force in 1974.
As one of the distinguished PR/Communication professionals in Nigeria, how do you rate PR practice in the past and present?
Is the profession lucrative especially between PR Consultants and In-house practitioners?
Both are lucrative in relative term. In all depends on individual philosophy and perception. Practitioners must satisfactorily answer the question ” why am I in this profession ”. You are actualised when you add value to what you are doing.
What would you say makes you uniquely qualifies for your line of work?
I like to believe that my key competencies, skills and robust pedigree are major determinants.
How do you view the emergence of NIPR as a professional body compared to other bodies in the communication industry?
The emergence of NIPR as a professional body vis-a-vis other related bodies was a welcome development but regrettably, it is now a shadow of its former self owing to polarization, politicization, ineptitude, lethargy and intellectual/ professional bankruptcy.
How could NIPR enhance its image and truly be a regulatory body for PR practitioners in Nigeria?
This can be achieved if in word and deed, we institutionalize professionalism and excellence. We presently pay lip service to this cliche.
Do you think the Act establishing NIPR requires amendments to strengthen it power?
I do not believe so. Rather, the operators of NIPR Act must respect the letter and spirit of the enabling law. The spoils of office have been blinding officers of the Institute, and conspiratorially, members of the Institute from development.
The Nigeria’s problems have always been on the image and reputation management, how could this be handled?
Image and reputation management require a lot of research, collation and analysis of findings, building of models/ scenarios, deciding on options, funding, implementation, tracking, capturing of lessons, commitment, professionalism and the rest. Anything short of these, will lead to no consequence.
Can the government handle it alone or what should be the approach in the spirit of Public-Private-Sector-Partnership (PPP)?
My humble submission is that government lacks the capacity to do the project all alone. It requires all stakeholders to work harmoniously for the good of all. It is too important to be left for the government to handle all alone.
Would you like to offer any advice to people wanting to go into PR?
Why not. First, do a critical self [psycho] analysis. Next, discover thyself. Plan to succeed professionally, spiritually and significantly. Be prepared to be a role model, a coach, a mentor and an inspirer.
So far how would you describe the relationship between the media and PR practitioners They are related and both have a lot to learn from each other. Unhealthy and unbridled rivalry should be eschewed like the plague.
Tell us the biggest challenge you’ve ever faced in your work
Working for the government and people of Ogun State as Commissioner for Information, Sports, Culture and Community Development: and as Chairman of the defunct Sketch Press during a military era.
What is your most exciting and memorable moment?
Every day that I survive the previous day
Any other comments or advice
Let us put courage, sagacity, objectivity, purpose, commitment, vision and conscience into life. GOD HAS A PURPOSE FOR CREATING US.