Mohammed Idris: The rise of a public relations strategist

On July 27, 2023, Senate President Godswill Akpabio read a letter from President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, unveiling the list of the first batch of ministers, 59 days after his inauguration. This brought an end to the list being peddled by some mischievous elements in the social media, which generated controversies.

The attention is now shifted to scrutinising the personalities summited to the senate for screening and confirmation as ministers of the federal republic. One name that caught the attention of Nigerians is Mohammed Idris Malagi from Niger state. This is not surprising given that he is a publisher and renowned public relations strategist. Mohammed Idris was the director, strategy and communications of Tinubu/Shetima Presidential Campaign Council which left no one in doubt that, beyond political narratives, the president means business to reform Nigeria.

Mohammed Idris was born on May 2, 1966, in Gbako local government area of Niger state. He had his early education in Kontagora between 1971 and 1977 and GSS Rijau from 1977 to 1982. He proceeded to Usmanu Danfodiyo University Sokoto in 1983, obtaining a BA in English in 1987. He had his master’s degree in the same discipline from the Bayero University Kano in 1995. He is a renowned publisher, public relations professional and a politician. He is the founder/chairman and publisher of Blueprint newspapers. He is also the chairman of Abuja based Kings Broadcasting Limited, owners of WE 106.5 FM and secretary general of Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria, NPAN.

His nomination did not come as a surprise, considering his wealth of experience and service to humanity. I have been expecting a man of his caliber to make the list from Niger state. My mentor and tutor, Yushau Shuaib, the publisher of PRNigeria, later confirmed the development to me via WhatsApp with an inscription “After PrNigeria Story, Tinubu nominates Blueprint Publisher Mohammed Idris as Minister”. As a writer, who has dozens of my articles published in the Blueprint newspaper, I am a direct beneficiary of the mentorship of this celebrated Nigerian through his newspaper.

He is beacon of hope who has given us a platform to exhibit our maximum potential as young aspiring public affairs analysts in Nigeria. Flipping through his name in the list has continued to generate unanimous praises and congratulations in simple and memorable terms across the country. In most profound way, Mohammed Idris is a Nigerian who understands the complexities and challenges confronting us as a nation. He will no doubt add value to the Tinubu administration as a publisher, public relations strategist with vast knowledge and experience of the impending issues for a critical thinker to solve.

His nomination is now a subject of national conversation as prayers of goodwill and best wishes continue to troop in across the country. He is being celebrated today for his contributions to the development and upliftment of public interest as a shinning public relations strategist. As the publisher and CEO of the Blueprint newspapers, one of the leading national dailies in Nigeria, Mohammed Idris has the requisite network to build strong bonds of friendships across the country. Many including myself have not had the fortune of meeting him but his newspaper mentorship has continued to make us relevant in our communities and the country at large.

Mohammed Idris is a member of the APC and was a governorship aspirant in Niger state in the 2023 general elections, but lost to Umar Bago, the incumbent governor of the state. What an awesome decision by President Tinubu to appoint one of the greatest Nigerians into his cabinet. The president has knowledge and understanding of Mohammed Idris’ capacity to deliver and turn things around in the most difficult of circumstances when he served in the president’s campaign council.

He is a bridge builder and communicator par excellence; a community leader and a humanitarian who holds the traditional title of Kakaaki Nupe, bestowed on him by Yahaya Abubakar, the Etsu Nupe. The title was in recognition of his philanthropic and personal accomplishments in the media and public relations space. On December 8, 2022, he won the Milestone Recognition Media Icons in Nigeria Award by the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ.

Since his entry into the political arena of Niger state and Nigeria, I short of accolades and encomiums to qualify him and resorted to using his trademark of supporting young aspiring youths, irrespective of tribe, religion and party affiliation, including humble myself, to flourish. He will succeed with exceptional records. Just like Alexander the Great conquered generals, Mohammed Idris is equally a lion that is leading an army of sheep and he will be ready from day one. Congratulations to a man with a heart of gold. I join eminent personalities to celebrate his rise as a shining public relations strategists. He has won the political war without shooting a bullet.

Danaudi, public affairs analyst and columnist, writes from Bauchi, Bauchi state via [email protected].