Recently, Mr. Isaac Okoroafor, the Acting director, corporate communications of the central bank of Nigeria (CBN), Stated that the apex bank resisted suggestions to float the Naira when the country was battling economic recession.
He made this statement at the Capital Chapter Congress of the Nigerian Institute of public relations (NIPR), F.C.T Chapter, held on the Wednesday 30th May, 2018, in Abuja where he talked about managing public confidence in a period of Economic Challenge- The Role of Public Relation.
He stated further that the bank was vindicated after the refusal of the proposed, that a floating exchange rate is a regime where the currency price is set by the forex market based on supply and demand compared with other currencies, this is in contrast to a fixed exchange rate, in which the government entirely or predominantly determines the rate.
Mr Isaac Okoroafor, stated that both local and international bodies made suggestions that the CBN should float the Naira but their suggestions were politely declined, because it was seen as a dangerous and wrong option for the economy, he further said that he strongly believes that they have succeeded and now they are trying to address their shortcomings, with crisis being unavoidable, therefore public relations practitioners needs to be more proactive.
Okoroafor advised the practitioners to be truthful and engage stakeholders continuously. He said that they don’t have to wait until there is a crisis before engaging, and that during period of normalcy, they need to engage with people and make sure that information prior to the crisis should be supplied to the people. Because when you engage people steadily, and crisis comes, they will be on your side because they already know the crisis will come.
He stated that there was need for Nigeria to begin to add value to the goods it exported in order to strengthen the Naira, for if we remained a nation of consumers- taking from other countries and hampering on local production that the Naira would continue to be weak.
Meanwhile the Chairman, NIPR, FCT Chapter stated that the decision to engage Okoroafor for the lecture was informed by his wealth of experience in public relations as the Acting Director, Corporate Communication of the Central Bank (CBN) and his team creditably acquitted themselves in public relations when Nigeria was in recession.
According to him, Nigerian economy is very important as we just emerged from recession and the CBN is very strategic agency in this country. He further stated that it was decided at executive level to include somebody from CBN to become a member, and that they have belief that as a public relations person heading the corporate communications department of CBN, he would be versatile enough to address the situation and issues in question.
The said, the nation faced some serious challenges but the strategy adopted by CBN public relations was able to douse tension and professionally handled the crisis. Hastrup said that he believed that the lecture would boost the professional capacity of public relations practitioners in handling challenges.