, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 8 – All communication officers working in government departments will be required to undergo a training program and receive accreditation from the Public Relations Society of Kenya (PRSK) in the next 20 months.
Information Communication and Technology Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said on Tuesday that the Continuous Professional Development Program will impart knowledge and industry skills to help the officers operate optimally as public relations and communications practitioners.
“We will professionalise the way in which we communicate so that we can communicate better,” he said explaining that the government needed to come up with better means of marketing Kenya in tourism and attracting investors.
“I am now going to require public communication officers in government within the next 20 months to ensure that they have participated in the CPD program and they are accredited by the PRSK,” he affirmed.
“Addressing public concern and issues is no longer a luxury; we are required by the Constitution to engage with the public and tell the public the truth,” he affirmed.
Speaking at the launch of new public relations regulations by PRSK, Matiang’i pledged to work with the society to ensure that the communication functions of the government are relayed in a suitable manner.
“Public communication is a very important aspect of our lives. We long lost the days when people thought that all you needed to be a communicator is a mouth. We need people to take their work seriously on the way they communicate,” he said.
“The greatest responsibility we have as a communication community is to communicate Kenya – to communicate the product called Kenya,” the ICT Secretary stressed.
He challenged the communication officers to reverse the negative publicity surrounding Kenya and instead help promote the image of Kenya positively.
“Sometimes we dwell too much on the negatives; we are almost becoming a mourning and whining environment.”
“We can also contribute as communicators, it is not the responsibility of the government alone we are all stakeholders in this product called Kenya,” he said.