By Abdulwaheed Olayinka Adubi
In the last political dispensation, it became more pronounced that media handlers of so many governors find it so difficult to efficiently manage this sensitive department of the government, due to numerious reasons. The complexity and sensivity of the department could be compared to that of being a governor, and failure of the department to discharge its responsibility duly, had spelt doom for some of the governors in the past.
Beyond expertise, many Special Advisers on Media to state Chief Executives had been found wanting due to what many have described as being narrow minded; and having not realised being the image maker of their principals and their lack of ability to see reasons to the role media can and often do play to project their respective principals. This made many of these governors to suffered injustice despite their efforts to diligently provide dividends of democracy to the people.
Amongst many other identified reasons, these media handlers failure has being ascribed to having regard for oneself above others’ well-being (selfish nature). In so many states, research has shown that these media aides lack Public Relations Techniques, (PRT) to create favourable view for their principals which led to the removal of many of the so called aides, especially in the last political dispensation.
However, now that Ismail Omipidan has taken over governor Oyetola’s media apparatus in Osun state to serve as an imagemaker of a Chief Executive Officer who just survived a legal battle. The question on the lips of many is that will Omipidan leave up to expectations, considering the political history of a state like Osun; using his Public Relations Techniques to be an image intensifier, image orthicon, image processing, image tube and imagesetter of Governor Oyelola as expected of him?
Undisputably, Omipidan whose name is like a golden fish in an ocean in the pen pushing profession is known for his expertise. One amongst his several virtues is keeping good relationship with people around him, and this characteristic place him in high esteem among others to put into account his antecedents.
The man Omipidan, a native of Ila Orangun, the headquarters of Ila Local Government Area of Osun State, was an Assistant Editor, in charge of Politics at The Sun Publishing Limited, Lagos.
Ismail Omipidan, the new Chief Press Secretary who resumed office in the said capacity on Monday, August 5, 2019, took over from Mr. Adeniyi Adesina, who resigned on mutual consent.
The new head of Osun Governor’s Press Crew holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communication from the University of Maiduguri, Borno State, and a Master’s degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna.
An alumnus of the University of Maiduguri, Omipidan had worked with The Comet, Weekly Trust, The Week Magazine, The Guardian, The Spectator, and The Punch.
Before his recent appointment, he was the Vice Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Kaduna Council and later was appointed as the Press Secretary to the immediate past Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.
Ismail Omipidan is a thorough professional in the field of journalism, who has seen it all, from field reporting, to National Assembly Correspondent, zonal Bureau Chief to becoming Group Political Editor.
The question is that will Omipidan translate his professionalism into being a good imagemaker and project Oyetola to the optimal?
“Yes, I know him for professionalism, contentment and selflessness. He took me from the then ‘dying’ New Nigerian Newspapers to work with him and he related with me like his blood brother.
“My expectation from him is to remove Osun from the list of states that are always absent from the media, and put the state and achievements of Governor Gboyega Oyetola in the headlines.
“I strongly believe he can handle the responsibility. This is somebody who has in the past help several CPSs deliver in their assignments. He equally has the human relations to win media friends to his boss”, AbdulGafar Alabelewe of the Nation Newspaper said.
The Zone ‘A’ Vice President, Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Comrade Yusuf Idris described Isma’il Omipidan as a simple and easy going personality. “He is honest, trustworthy, down-to-earth and dependable”.
Idris who was the Chairman while Omipidan served as the Vice Chairman of the Kaduna State Council says: “I am very confident and optimistic that, Inshaa Allah, Omipidan will discharge his duties beyond the expectations of his principal. He is a journalist that performs his job without fear or favour or love for materialism.
” Ismail Omipidan is a builder and a developer of human capacity. He had developed and built so many Journalists irrespective of their tribe and religion. His watchword is professionalism in Journalism.
” Omipidan is not known for sectionalism, but a professional to the core”, Dominic Uzu, former two time Secretary of the Kaduna Council, said.
The incumbent Secretary of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Kaduna Council, Comrade John Femi Adi also described Omipidan as a down-to-earth, humble, gentle, kind and open minded person.
” One thing that stands him out is that he is not arrogant, despite the favour of God upon him, and he does not look down on those he has advantage over”, Sola Ojo of the Sun Newspaper said.
Also, a veteran Journalist, elder John Fwah described him as a worthy representative of journalism, who is capable and can deliver on the good image of the state, just like he projected the profession in a very good light.
According to him, the state government and journalism profession will benefit from the immense quality endowed in him.
“Omipidan is a straight forward person, who does not believe in eye service. He is a man who has human feelings and always ready to mentor whoever comes his way.
” One of his qualities is that, no matter your relationship with him, he tells you the truth if you are failing in your responsibilities. He is very humble. Above all, he is hard working and God fearing person. He will do better in his present capacity as the CPS, and his principal will never regret having him as CPS”, the Financial Secretary, NUJ Kaduna Council concluded.