Public Relations (PR) practitioners in Kenya are set to receive new policies that will boost professional standards within the sector, the Public Relations Society of Kenya (PRSK), a regulator for the industry, has said.
Incoming PRSK President Dr. Wilfred Marube said the new certifications are part of wide ranging reforms that will be rolled out as part of the overall effort to guarantee professional Public Relations practice in Kenya.
Speaking at the conclusion of the PRSK General Elections held in Nairobi this May, Dr Marube confirmed that plans to weed out unqualified practitioners would be sustained by the new PRSK Council.
Such plans include lobbying engagements for the proposed draft Institute of Public Relations and Communication Management Bill geared at facilitating the legislative formation of a professional body (the Institute of Public Relations and Communication Management) to regulate and promote standards of competence and practice among PR practitioners.
Public Relations practitioners in Kenya, Dr Marube noted are currently managing operating budgets estimated at more than Ksh8.7 billion (about $86 million), necessitating the need to enhance the professional profile of the specialised communications discipline, to accelerate its economic and social impact.
“At PRSK, we have a new Strategic Plan which highlights the need to guarantee quality practice. The new PRSK Council has been mandated by the membership to ensure that we sustain the transformation, which we commit to undertake,” he explained.
Following the elections, Dr. Marube who also serves as the Communications Director at the Office of the Auditor General (OAG) has taken over the mantle from outgoing PRSK President Ms Jane Gitau. He will be assisted by Vice President Mbugua Njoroge, Treasurer Arik Karani and Secretary Lilian Nganda. Other PRSK officials include Assistant Treasurer Michelle Anekeya, Assistant Secretary Vivienne Atieno, Council Members Tim Kamuzu Banda, Dr Haron Mwangi and Alfred Ng’ang’a.
As a profession, PR has continued to grow since its establishment in the early 20th Century. The profession is increasingly becoming accepted as an integral part of organizational operations in many parts of the world including Kenya.
The PRSK boasts more than 3,000 members. It was established in 1971 and serves as the umbrella professional body guiding PR practice in Kenya. The Society broadly seeks to advance excellence in Public Relations and Communication Management in Kenya and to ensure that the practice continues to thrive within the ethical framework defined by the profession.
Within the East African Region, thePRSK is a member of the East African Public Relations Association (EAPRA). The PRSK is also a member of the Africa Public Relations Association (APRA), the continental body for all PR national associations in Africa. At the global level, the PRSK is a founder member of the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communications Management (GA) among other global bodies such as the International Public Relations Association (IPRA).