Spokesman for the Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria (AIB-N), Mr. Tunji Oketunbi, has been conferred with the ‘Public Relations Manager of the Year 2021’ award.
Oketunbi was honoured at the 26th Annual Conference of the League of Airport and Aviation Correspondents (LAAC) held in Lagos recently.
According to LAAC, the conferee who was former aviation editor of The Guardian Newspaper, earned the award “in recognition of his achievements of ensuring that the general public is adequately informed of the Bureau’s activities.”
It stated that Oketunbi has not only helped to project the image of the bureau, “but has done this in a timely and consistent manner.”
“He has worked closely with the commissioner of the bureau, Mr. Akin Olateru who has released and disseminated many accident and incident reports and safety recommendations than any management before it.
Oketunbi has been commended by many for his attitude to work, as he is always available and willing to give out information that keeps the public better informed on accidents and incidents in the sector,” it added.
The League described the recipient as “jovial and down to earth” adding that his “endearing nature has made him become the face of AIB.”
Commenting on the award, Oketunbi thanked the organisers of the conference and dedicated the award to the Olateru, who was also at the event.
“This award is as a result of the hard work and dedication of my boss, Engr. Akin Olateru, towards the successful achievement of the Bureau’s mandate.
“His achievements since he assumed office as the Commissioner of AIB have made my work, as an image maker, easier. I remember there was a time when the media would continuously ask me when AIB would release a report and all I could reply was soon. All that is a thing of the past now in AIB because we have been releasing our reports in a timely manner,” Oketunbi said.
He explained that prior to Olateru’s appointment, he had his job cut out for him as when journalists and other industry stakeholders bombarded him with questions on when the report of accidents or incidents would be released.
Often times he said he would grope for a proper response without injuring his conscience and not desecrating journalism with falsehood or untruth.
However, he said the commissioner has, since assumption of office, lightened his load by publishing accident/incident reports and recommendations promptly.
“His achievements since he assumed office as the Commissioner of AIB-N have made my work, as an image maker, easier”.
“I remember there was a time when the media would continuously ask me when AIB-N would release a report and all I could reply was soon. All that is a thing of the past now in AIB because we have been releasing our reports in a timely manner,” Oketunbi said.
He also expressed appreciation to the media for the cordial relationship and cooperation they have maintained with the Bureau over the years, while promising to do more to improve upon the relationship.
The conference was held on July 28, in Lagos under the theme ‘Sunset Airports: Economic and safety implications.’