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The Lagos State Government has challenged its public affairs team to move with trends in information management. Such trends include new ideas and skills, which can elevate service delivery and enhance public confidence.

In his welcome address at the three-day Y2021 Annual retreat for Public Affairs Officers held at Orchid Hotels, Lekki, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, said the moment officers, as managers of information move with trends, fake news would be a thing of the past. 

Omotoso said, “I can tell you that no disease, apart from COVID-19, is afflicting the world more than fake news and this is the time all practitioners should rise and fight it. I know that if our information officers should start moving with trends, it would be of great advantage in this fight”.

Stating that the theme of the retreat, “Managing Information through the new media in a VUCAD (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous and Disruptive) World”, has a lot of relevance in the world today, the Commissioner congratulated the organisers as well as the participants of the retreat, which he described as the second ever to be organised by Lagos State Government for its Public Affairs officers. 

The Commissioner said the place of information dissemination and managementcould not be overemphasised in the life of any human organisation, adding that it is hard to imagine an organisation, home, community and society where communication is non-existent. 

He noted that because the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration knows the essence of communication in governance, it always supported every move to reposition the Ministry of Information and Strategy as well as its affiliated agencies. 

“Without an effective information management mechanism, our plan to attain a Greater Lagos might be in jeopardy, hence, we shall continue to invest in the advancement of all our information organs. I urge all the State’s information agencies to evolve a process of building public confidence in the administration’s policies and programmes”,Omotoso said.

Delivering his keynote address at the opening ceremony, the Head of Service, Mr. Hakeem Muri-Okunola, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Office, Mrs. Tolani Oshodi, expressed appreciation to the Ministry of Information and Strategy for convening a retreat packed with programmes that will improve the skills and output of its team, just as he reflected that information management and dissemination has moved a notch higher than what was the norm.

Muri-Okunola, therefore, urged participants to take full advantage of the opportunity provided by the forum to improve their knowledge, skills and competencies as information management professionals, while making meaningful and impactful contributions towards achieving the set objectives of the exercise.

Also speaking earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Olusina Thorpe, welcomed all the participants, giving an assurance that the takeaways from the programme would linger long beyond the brainstorming sessions lined up for the retreat and encouraging officers to make the retreat interactive.

His words: “In the next couple of days, I urge all of us to be frank and sincere in our contributions about salient issues that affect our reputation and professional cadre as image-makers of the State Government. This is not a time to speak half-truths. It is not an occasion to stand aloof”.

Thorpe urged all participants to ensure the sessions are interactive and promised that despite the busy lineup, everyone should look forward to a fun-filled occasion.

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