Temitope Oguntokun , Corporate Affairs and Legal Director, International Breweries Plc

Temitope Oguntokun, Corporate Affairs and Legal Director, International Breweries Plc (a member of the world’s beer group, AB InBev), is responsible for driving and coordinating the corporate affairs and legal strategy of the organization for sustainable business performance.

She has broad competencies in strategy development, change management, project management, corporate communications (internal and external), company secretariat, legal and investor relations, as well as sustainability and corporate social responsibility. She also has competencies in corporate affairs and government relations; legal support and compliance; marketing and brand communications; stakeholder/reputation/issues/crisis

management; health, safety and environment communications, as well as journalism.

Oguntokun supports organizations to build reputation, positive image and safeguard their legal and social licenses to operate. A mature professional, her experience spans across Nigeria, Africa and global contexts. She has wide experience working with, and supporting boards, CEOs, directors and cross-functional teams to deliver on performance. She has coordinated multiple projects with verifiable direct contribution to business strategy and goals.

She brought into International Breweries at the time she joined in 2019 as Country Lead, Sustainability and Stakeholder Management, many years’ experience of providing integrated communications and sustainable development services for organizations and brands in different industries, and in different multinationals across multicultural backgrounds.

Her current position as Corporate Affairs and Legal Director, through a promotion in April, 2020, allows her to support and lead the country operation of AB InBev’s internationally renowned dedication to sustainability, to enable International Breweries to go further by entrenching Sustainable Development, ESG and the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations across the company’s value chain under the guidance of its 2025 Sustainability Goals. These goals are Smart Agriculture, Climate Action, Water Stewardship, Circular Packaging and Smart Drinking. The company has one objective in mind, namely, to bring people together for a better world.

Oguntokun began her career as a journalist at Independent Communications Network Limited (Publishers of The NEWS Magazine) at the position of Staff Writer, before joining Corporate and Financial Communications Limited (now C&F Porter Novelli), a public relations firm, as Deputy Manager, Business Development. She later moved to The Quadrant Company, another public relations firm, as Senior Analyst.

She started her journey in the corporate world in 2008 when she joined Lafarge Cement WAPCO Nigeria Plc as Head of Communications, thus commencing a climb up the ladder, to the position of Corporate Brand and Sustainability Manager. She was soon made the company’s Head, Sustainability and Brand.

While on that position, she led the development and execution of broad-based and country-wide strategic sustainability initiatives for the company, benchmarking with the LH Group Sustainable Development Ambitions (The 2030 Plan) and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs).

She also managed the corporate brand and image building strategies of Lafarge Africa, and implemented the Group’s brand positioning locally, building a positive reputation and perception for the company before its internal and external stakeholders.

Oguntokun built a track record of excellence in her career which led to awards and recognitions including being awarded the most outstanding Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Practitioner of the Year (First runner up) at The SERAS CSR Awards-Africa in recognition of her outstanding sustainable development interventions and solutions at Lafarge Africa Plc, in 2017.

She attended Polytechnic, Ibadan, where she had her Higher National Diploma in Mass Communication; Lagos State University, Post Graduate Diploma, Communications Studies; University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership; Master of Arts degree in Communications, Media and Public Relations, from the University of Leicester.

Oguntokun has leadership skills in working with, and through teams, influencing and empowering others, and leadership in the ability to think creatively and innovate. Her leadership ambition is to be authentic, lead from the heart and develop people. She loves to work with the end in sight and have fun. Her personal contributions to a sustainable society, is through coaching, mentoring and volunteering

She is a trustee and board member of the International Breweries Foundation, Seedtime Foundation; an Executive Council Member of Mzuzah, and an Executive Council Member, Association of Sustainability Professionals of Nigeria (ASPN), and has also participated in the Prince of Wales’ Business and Sustainability Programme

Bola Atta , Group Director, Marketing and Corporate Communications, UBA

The first thing that comes to mind when the name, Bola Atta, is mentioned is the fact that she is the Corporate Communications Personality of the Decade. That is no mean feat for a woman to achieve in a male-dominated field. It speaks volumes about the competence and expertise of the Group Director, Marketing and Corporate Communications of the United Bank for Africa Plc, (UBA), in her job of overseeing the design and deployment of marketing and corporate communications strategies across 18 African countries for one of the continent’s biggest financial institutions.

Describe Atta as an Amazon, and you won’t be wrong. It is a description she has earned as of right, being one of the best in her field on the continent. This conclusion is reflected on the high profile position of UBA as a truly pan-African bank – a position that has her input.

Atta set out from beginning upon completion of her education to work in the financial industry, not because she had a passion for it, but because it is an area she believed offered her the least resistance, apparently because she was good in Mathematics and later developed love for Economics. But she did not join the industry immediately, an industry that would put her on continental spotlight.

“So, when I say that I thought I would work in finance, this was not necessarily because I particularly had a passion for it, but because I was good in Mathematics and later in Economics, and I thought that was the way to go,” she recalled.

Armed with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Sussex which she obtained in 1988 and an MBA from Duquesne University in 1991, she decided to go into an area for which she had a passion – publishing. She was the Editor-in-Chief of True Love West Africa magazine, an entertainment and fashion magazine, from 2004 to 2010.

She moved to Flair Productions in 2010 as Chief Executive Officer in charge of West Africa. While holding that position, she was also the Executive Producer of Africa’s Next Top Model, a reality television show that was fashioned after America’s Next Top Model show. The programme premiered in 2012.

Atta left the programme to join M-Net (Electronic Media Network) West Africa as Programmes Manager. She is remembered for being instrumental to the creation of more channels for the promotion of Nigerian and African movies. She played an active role in the conceptualization, development and programming of Africa Magic, arguably the most watched channel on DSTV in the whole of Africa.

Atta was appointed Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Communications for UBA, and doubles as Executive Producer of REDTV, an online communications network that is supported by the bank. Her experience and expertise in the entertainment industry is evident on REDTV, as it has remained a strong channel of communication for the pan-African bank. She also heads the UBA Foundation as its Chief Executive Officer – the corporate social responsibility arm of the bank.

Atta has a unique way of tackling challenges. She pauses and strategizes in the face of challenges, and is sure to work out intended results. ‘‘No matter what one is confronted with at every point, there is always a way out of every situation,” she believes. The enormous size of UBA and its interest in many areas is one challenge she has been able to handle with the highest degree of professionalism. She wrote on her LinkedIn age: “I have always loved doing what I do and my objective has never been acclaim or recognition. It’s the milestones; the changing lives! Therein lies the fulfilment.”

Awards and recognitions

Atta has numerous awards and recognitions under her belt. Among the recognitions are nominations among the 40 Top Nigerians Under the Age of 40 in 2008; 100 Most Influential Women in Nigeria, 2015 and the award of Best Marketing Professional in West Africa in 2017. She was given the award of Outstanding Corporate Communications Personality of the Decade by Marketing Edge magazine at the eighth edition of its Annual Marketing Summit of Brands and Advertising Excellence Awards.

In recognition of her expertise in the area of communication, Atta was included in the 100-member panel of judges to determine winners of the 2020 Prize for APO Women in Journalism Award. The award recognizes, celebrates and empowers African women in the media industry and also supports female entrepreneurship throughout the continent. The panel of judges comprised top corporate communication experts from reputable organizations around the world, including Microsoft, African Development Bank, FIFA, Coca Cola, Master Card, Harley-Davidson, LEGO and Twitter, among many others.

In 2021, she was honoured by MIPAD as one of the Most Influential 100 Creatives of African Descent.

Cornel OsigweHead , Corporate Communications, Innoson Vehicles manufacturing Company Limited

Cornel Osigwe wears two caps. He is the Head, Corporate Communications for Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited (IVM), currently Nigeria’s most renowned indigenous auto maker. He also holds the position of Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Freshminds Group, which includes Freshminds Communications Limited, publishers of Anaedo Online and owners of Anaedo Television, as well as The Digi Hub, which handles advanced software development and ICT.

The Innoson Group is what may be described as Nigeria’s pride in technological advancement, as far as local manufacture of automobiles is concerned. The company is seen by many as holding the country’s hope of being enlisted in the group of automobile manufacturing companies, with production of vehicles that have been certified to be of the same standard with those produced in developed countries, in terms of quality and durability.

However, the company was, for a long time, seen as a regional brand with products and name confined to the south eastern part of the country, particularly Anambra State where it is based. The situation is no longer the same today, in terms of perception and image. Public perception of IVM is that of a fast growing Nigerian auto maker that has now put the country on the map of vehicle manufacturers in Africa. That has been made possible by Osigwe, the IVM perception manager.

Shortly after coming on board, Osigwe employed conventional and social media outlets to drive a new corporate image for the IVM, using well-conceived and designed strategies to implement the group’s communication programmes that have significantly and positively changed public perception of the brand. The use of social media has created for IVM an online presence that has enabled people around the world to know about the Group.

A major corporate communication pogramme of the IVM was sponsorship of the 2021 edition of Big Bother Naija, the popular reality television show that keeps the young and middle class segments of the Nigerian population in front of their television sets virtually for 24 hours over a period of three months every year. The mileage the company got from participation in a programme that was watched all over Africa was unquantifiable. But records show that participation in the programme boosted not just the company’s image and popularity, but its sales figures as well

One of the most important public relations programmes designed and implemented by Osigwe, which ended up achieving a significant milestone for the Group, was a successful factory tour of the IVM plant he organized for international media organizations such as BBC, France 24 TV and Reuters News Agency, as well as a special feature article on Innoson vehicles on CNN. That event brought IVM on to the global stage.

Osigwe has also organized various world press conferences and factory tours by media executives at the Group’s facilities, which provided opportunities for showcasing the different brands in the stable of IVM. He has organized factory tours involving top government functionaries such as the country’s vice president, ministers and military chiefs, among others.

It is a testimony of the quality and reliability of the Innoson brand that Professor Charles Soludo, Governor of Anambra State, uses a car from the company’s stable as his official car. The governor also made it a policy of his administration that all official vehicles of the state government must be purchased from Innoson. Soludo is the first governor in Nigeria to come up with such a policy, which is designed to encourage patronage of the company’s vehicles.

Hopefully, other state governments, including the Federal Government, will adopt the same policy as a practical implementation of the call for patronage of Nigerian made products, with a view to diversifying the country’s economy in order to create more revenue sources through export.

Osigwe’s writing and communication skills are evident in the fact that he is credited with writing and producing four major IVM adverts shown on Big Brother Naija, as well as major television stations across the country

About Osigwe

Osigwe is many things rolled into one – author, publisher, inspirational speaker, blogger and trainer. He has held counseling sessions and programs in secondary schools, universities and National Youth Service Corps orientation camps in different parts of the country, and has been featured in television and radio programmes on different stations.
Osigwe holds a Professional Certificate in Public Relations from the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations and a Professional Diploma in Public Relations and Business Management from Business Education and Examination Council of the United Kingdom. He is a member of many professional bodies and has also attended many professional courses and seminars in diverse areas such as Personnel Management, Career Development, Information Technology, as well as Marketing and Youth Development.
He is a Fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants; a Certified Management Consultant; Certified Negotiation Specialist and an Associate member of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations.

Frank Mba Ex- Force public relations officer, Nigeria Police

Frank Mba, a Commissioner of Police and Force Public Relations Officer, has been a regular feature on national television newsbulletins in recent times. Television viewers are now used to seeing him parade, on a regularly basis, suspected criminals linked to various crimes such as kidnapping, bombing, robbery, murder, car theft, child trafficking and illegal possession of fire arms.

The regular feature of the public relations officer of Nigeria’s main law enforcement agency in the news can only mean one thing – the agency has stepped up its activities by turning the heat on suspected criminals.

But Mba’s job is not all about parading suspected criminals on television. It’s about communicating to the Nigerian public the activities of the police regarding performance of its constitutional responsibilities of law and order enforcement, as well as apprehension of suspected criminals for prosecution in courts of competent jurisdiction. This is against the background of escalating insecurity in the country, especially in the northern part, which has seen citizens losing faith in the country’s entire security apparatus.

Mba’s regular appearance on television does not in any way suggest that the police were not performing their roles during previous dispensations before he came into officer. It is indicative of the fact that the activities of the police were not properly communicated to Nigerians, the reason they never believed the agency was doing enough in the area of security, or maintenance of law and order.

Mba’s tenure has come at a most difficult and challenging time for the police – certainly, not the best time for the job of a perception manager. Never in the recent history of the police has it faced challenges on practically all fronts, something that has stretched its capacity to the limit. The police are working with other security agencies, including the armed forces, to contain the escalating cases of kidnapping in the north. It is battling to contain herdsmen and farmers’ conflicts in different parts of the country; contract murders, especially as political activities increase in the run-up to the 2023 general elections; attack on police stations and personnel in the South East, as well as the regular crimes it deals with on a daily basis.

To say that Mba’s plate is permanently full is to make a gross understatement. He has to keep internal communication within the agency throughout the country working perfectly as it should. He has to coordinate information from police formations all over the country for communication to the public. He must assure Nigerians on a regular basis that their lives and property are safe, with ‘practical proofs’ of what the police are doing in that regard, which is what brings him on television regularly.

It would not be farfetched to suggest that public perception in relation to the challenge of insecurity in the country, as it involves the police, is a positive one to the extent that the agency is trying its best, in the face of lack of human and material resources. In fact, some of the successes the police have recorded in some parts of the country have brought about the suggestion in some quarters that the agency would bring criminality under control all over the country if it was well equipped.

Mba has demonstrated knowledge and understanding of the difficult job of managing perception for an agency that does not enjoy the best of relationships with the public due mainly to the activities of a few bad eggs within its fold. With the perception the public has of the police, if there is one officer who could be said to handle his job with a human face, Mba is the man. He takes time to explain intricate issues with the level of calmness that gives the impression his job is the easiest in the world. Those who have interacted with him say he has a friendly disposition that is not common among people in uniform, the reason his inter-personal relationship with the public is quite remarkable.

It is a testimony of Mba’s competence on his job that he is only one of the four Force public relations officers of the Police who have held the office more than once since 1961. Felix Musa, a commissioner of police, held the office when it was first created in 1983 up to 1985, and was re-appointed in late 1985 and held the office till 1986. Haz Iwendi, a chief superintendent of police, was first appointed to hold the office in 1992, and was on the position till 1993. He was reappointed in 2000 up till 2002, and returned for a third term in 2005 at the rank of commissioner of police, holding the office till 2015.

Mba’s first tenure as Force Public Relations Officer was in 2012, at the rank of assistant commissioner of police. He held the office up till 2013, and returned in January, 2019 at the rank of a deputy commissioner of police. The statement announcing his current tenure and signed by Chief Superintendent of Police Aremu Adeniran described him as, “a passionate and versatile police officer who has worked in multiple police units and departments across the country”. He was promoted commissioner in December, 2020.

Mba’s credentials are quite impressive, which explain why there is a general belief that he is quite good at the job. He graduated from the Nigeria Police Academy, Kano, in 1993 as the best cadet inspector in academics. He studied law at the University of Lagos and was called to the bar in 2002, and later obtained a Master’s in law from the University of Dundee, Scotland.

He holds a certificate in National and International Security from Harvard University and is also a graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy in Quantico, both in the United States.

Mba has attended trainings and courses within and outside the country which have equipped him with knowledge of practically every aspect of policing, security and law enforcement, such that he fits easily into any department or unit he finds himself, just CSP Adeniran noted in the letter announcing his second time appointment as force public relations officer.

The trainings and courses include Countering Violent Extremism and Police Leadership Course at the International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA), Roswell, New Mexico, USA (2018); Strategic Leadership and Command Course, Police Staff College, Jos (2017); Crisis and Disaster Management Course, Israel (2013) and Managing the Media in Crisis Situations, School of Media and Communications, Pan Atlantic University, Lagos (2013). Others are the International Visitor Leadership Programme, with special focus on International Crime Issues, Washington DC (2010), sponsored by the United States government; General Criminal Investigation Course at the International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA), Botswana (2009) and Middle Management Course on Global Peace Operations in Vicenza, Italy (2008).

Mba’s 28-year career in the Police has seen a meteoric rise in positions, a reflection of the competence and professionalism he has brought to bear on his job. He has held the following important positions: Assistant Superintendent of Police, 1999; Deputy Superintendent of Police, 2003; Superintendent of Police, 2006 and Chief Superintendent of Police, 2012. Others are Assistant Commissioner of Police; Deputy Commissioner of Police, 2019 and Commissioner of Police, 2020.

He was a member of the Nigeria Police Contingent to the United Nations Peace Keeping Mission in Liberia between, 2006 and 2007,

Dr. Pius Ughakpoteni  Director, Media Relations, Niger Delta Development Commission

The past two years have been a very challenging period for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), perhaps more challenging than any other time in its 22-year history. It has been a period when almost everything has gone wrong with the image and reputation of the organization that was set up to carry out the infrastructural development of the region that produces the country’s economic mainstay – oil; to repair the damage that oil exploration and production activities have done to the environment, including farmlands, means of livelihood, maritime activities, aquatic life, as well as the lives of the people of the region.

As if speaking in unison but obviously spurred by the forensic audit of the Federal Government, there was a general clamour by Nigerians for a microscopic investigation of the activities of all past administrations of NDDC from inception, against the background of revelations that the development that has taken place in the region during the period has not matched the colossal sums of money that are said to have been spent by the commission. The agency was in the news over a long period for the wrong reasons, certainly, not the best of times for anyone with responsibility to manage its relations with the media.

It was the period when the competence of Dr. Pius Ughakpoteni, Director of Media Relations for NDDC, was put to test – probably the biggest test of his career. It is a matter for conjecture, or debate, as to whether or not he passed that test. But suffice it to say that he acquitted himself creditably in a manner only a professional could do. Despite the negative publicity that trailed activities in the commission during the period of the audit, NDDC still emerged with its image intact, thanks to Ughakpoteni’s efforts in managing media relations with the commission during the period.

A look through Ughakpoteni’s profile would reveal the reason he was able to weather the storm during the period NDDC faced adversity from all fronts. He is a journalist, public relations practitioner,management and futuristic sustainability leadership practitioner and researcher with 30 years’ experience across Nigeria’s private and public sectors.Hisareas of expertise include writing, research, public relations, collaboration and stakeholder engagement. With research interests lying at the intersection of leadership, sustainability, innovation, change and strategy implementation, he is fascinated by collaboration and constructive engagement for change, as well as by questions around how to work with top executives to advance corporate sustainability performance for the good of all.

Ugakpoteni was on the pioneer team of journalists that midwifed the birth of two national newspapers – Thisday and Leadership. He was also the Group Political editor for The Abuja Inquirer.

He worked with othersto refocus and strengthen the employee newsletter and external stakeholder magazine of NDDC as reliable media of communicating with the organization’s diverse publics to elicit their understanding and support. He also assisted in broadening and deepening media coverage of the commission by working in collaboration with colleagues within the organization, and with external print, electronic and new media practitioners to foster and improve public awareness of, and support for, the commission’s development projects and programmes.

For over 18 years, Ughakpoteni has held various positions in NDDC doing what he knows best: Senior Manager, Publications, from December, 2004 to December, 2007; Principal Manager/ Head, Publications, from January 2008 to December, 2011; Assistant Director, Publications, from January, 2012 to September, 2015. He was Assistant Director, Media Relations, from October, 2015 to June, 2016; Assistant Director, Culture, from July, 2016 to May, 2017 and Deputy Director, Media Relations, from January, 2016 to December, 2019. He has been on his current position from January, 2020.

During this period, Ughakpoteni has deployed his skills in journalism and public relations in the execution of tasks such as conceptualization, design and production of routine and special publications. He has also assisted in the conceptualization and implementation of programmes to engage youths and women in the culture segment of the creative industry for the purpose of facilitating poverty reduction and economic revival in the Niger Delta region.

Ugakpoteni holds a Master of Science in Business Management and Research from the Hanley Business School and an MBA in Leadership and Sustainability from the University of Cumbria. Currently a part-time doctoral candidate at Business School Lausanne, he is a researcher working with C-suite executives in Nigeria on corporate sustainability performance advancement.

He has two publications to his credit, namely, Top Management and Leadership Antecedents of Corporate Sustainability Performance and Making the Niger Delta Work: Strategy Execution Tips from the Niger Delta Regional Development Master Plan.

A volunteer for climate change, Ughakpoteni is a Global Ambassador for Change for Global Conscience World, a position that allows him to use various media platforms to educate people about climate change and the positive actions they can take to help the process.