Former President John Dramani Mahama has been inducted onto the Africa Public Relations Association (APRA) as an Honorary Fellow.
This was after he addressed members of the African Public Relations Association it's 31st Annual Conference in Kigali, Rwanda Tuesday May 14. 2019.
Mahama investiture was conducted by the President of APRA, Yomi Badejo-Okusanya, with his Vice, Robyn de Villars and the Secretary General, Jane Gitau supporting.
The former President who an Honorary Member of the Institute of Public Relations, Ghana, and a Communications Practitioner, chaired the opening session of the Conference.
In his opening remarks, Mr Mahama charged Africans to champion their own values to the world whenever they have the opportunity, stressing that, no one could tell African stories better than ourselves.
According to him, “New media, and the knowledge feast it has engendered offers us the opportunity to brand our continent appropriately, to establish a different narrative of our beautiful continent. Today, just armed with a smartphone, one can tell the story of Africa, the story of our community, the story of our family to millions across the world.
“Positive engagements such as this conference, in which we tell our story and supported by the professional practitioners like you should help with improving the advocacy and changing the narrative about Africa.
“We can best tell our stories when we gain control over ourselves; when we ground our identities in a sense of pride of who we are and where we have come from.
“But we need an admission as Africans that we have often-times not been true to ourselves; that we have not paid sufficient attention to who we are. We have easily discarded our traditions and embraced foreign cultures that have eroded the high moral values bequeathed us by our forebears.
“We must retrace our steps. We have examples we can learn from and those we can avoid. Our narratives must hold the mirror to what we can be.
“We need to evaluate the stories out there about us, and who has had the power to tell our story while that person tells his or her own story too.
“We Africans have tongues in our mouths; let us also tell our own stories.”
The three-day conference is on the theme: “Africa and storytelling, changing the narratives”, and participants would discuss among others, new trends in Public Relations, the influence of New Media and Technology on the practice of Public Relations and creativity.
The conference would also see the participants discuss how to tell Africa stories, false narratives about Africa, an evidential rebuttal and a review of a reputation matters survey.