By Yinka Akanbi
The Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria (ARCON) has banned the use of foreign models and voice over artists in advertising and the media from October 1, 2022.
ARCON made this known on Monday at a press briefing on its new law and the advertising framework in Nigeria held at the L’Eola Hotel in Maryland Lagos.
Speaking at the briefing, Director-General of ARCON, Olelakan Fadolapo, revealed that the ban would take effect on Nigeria’s 62nd independence anniversary.
He, however, clarified that running or ongoing campaigns would be allowed to run out its course.
Reacting to the ban in a statement he signed personally, President of Association of Voice-Over Artistes (AVOA), Segun Arinze, described the news as a welcome development.
“We say this is a welcome development. It’s an enabling regulation that favours the local industry, especially at a time Nigeria is in dire need of sufficient platforms for its teeming youth population.
“This is a clear demonstration of responsiveness on the part of ARCON. It is now left to us in the various Guilds and Associations to put our acts together and ensure that Nigeria is not only capable of filling all gaps but the capacity to project these talents to the world. For us at the Association of Voice Over Artistes (AVOA)Nigeria, it is a new dawn, and we are already at work on how to position our members to fill those gaps,” the statement read.
President Muhammadu Buhari recently signed the ARCON bill into law, which seeks to allow the body operate as the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria in line with its mandate of regulating the advertising industry in Nigeria.
The assented bill, which repeals the Advertising Practitioners’ Act, recognises ARCON as the apex authority for the Nigerian advertising industry. By this signing, it is the statutory responsibility of ARCON to make provision for the regulation and control of advertising in all its ramifications and create the Advertising Offences Tribunal among other powers.
The approved ARCON bill, therefore, becomes a final imperative call for advertisers and agency practitioners to be aware of the potential legal ramifications of their advertising practice and initiatives, especially with respect to regulated products, in order to obviate legal exposure and liability. Such need becomes even more compelling where the audience of the advertising is, courtesy of technology and online platforms, which are running riot at the moment.
By Yinka Akanbi