• Advertisers kick as ARCON summons school over advert

    Advertisers kick as arcon summons school over advert - nigeria newspapers online
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    The Advertisers’ Association of Nigeria has criticised the Advertising Regulatory Council for summoning an Ogun State-based school, The Ambassadors College, over its advert published in Newspaper on September 2, 2023.

    ARCON, in a summons dated December 19, 2023, directed the school’s chairman, Mr Samson Osewa, to appear before the Advertising Offences Tribunal for publishing an advert “that was neither vetted nor approved by the Advertising Standards Panel.”

    “Mr Samson Yomi Osewa, Chairman of The Ambassador College has been charged by ARCON with unlawful exposure on the 12th day of September, in Newspaper page 25.

    “You contravened by exposing your press advertisement titled ‘A tradition of excellence, a culture of excellence’ without vetting of the Advertising Standards Panel,” ARCON said in its summons to Osewa.

    However, the President of the Advertisers Association of Nigeria, Osamede Uwibanmwen, faulted ARCON, saying it could not act as both “a jury and executioner” at the same time.

    He said, “It is a bit strange. I never knew they also go after school. If you look at this new law that we are trying to fight, it covers everything, including logos, trademarks and all.

    “What the court said in the NBC (National Broadcasting Commission) case is true. The court said that you cannot be jury and executioner, that you cannot be regulator and executioner at once. But you won’t expect ARCON to learn from the NBC. They will not do that.

    “The NBC now will be very cautious about fining anybody, because they have lost the first case and have lost the appeal. I don’t know if they will go to the Supreme Court.”

    Speaking further, Uwibanmwen said ARCON’s new law, which broadens the power of the commission, is premised on its failed attempts in the past to convict some unnamed violators of the repealed APCON law.

    He also questioned why the law would empower the tribunal to impose prison sentences on entities deemed to have violated the provisions of the Act.

    However, the Director-General of the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria, Olalekan Fadolapo, said the provisions of the law were clear on the stipulations that must be conformed to before publishing any advert.

    Since the introduction of the new ARCON Law, which effectively repealed the code that regulated the advertising industry under the defunct Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria, ADVAN has been at loggerheads with its regulator over the provisions of the law.

    According to ADVAN, certain aspects of the ARCON law appear to conflict with the Nigerian constitution.

    In October 2022, ADVAN filed a lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of the amended Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria Law.

    The association said that the move to challenge the new advertising law comes after a thorough and deliberate consideration of the law’s implications for the advertising industry and its members.

    ADVAN further said it viewed the legal action as an essential response to safeguard the interests of its members and the integrity of the marketing profession in Nigeria.

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