The Advertisers Association of Nigeria ADVAN rejects the implementation of the new Advertising Industry Standard of Practice as it makes an unconstitutional attempt to infringe on the rights of private entities to determine their contractual terms.
ADVAN is very supportive of the plan to create a Standard of Practice for the advertising industry, a key objective of ADVAN is to facilitate and support progress in the advertising and marketing communications industry. ADVAN is excited to be a part of any initiative towards the development of industry best practice which will facilitate business and economic growth.
The Supreme Court has in many decisions, pronounced that the rationale for freedom of contract is founded on public policy: i.e., parties of full age and competent understanding are deemed to have the utmost liberty of contracting, and that their contracts when entered freely and voluntarily must be held sacred and be enforced by courts of law,
Furthermore, as principal benefactors of Advertising services our role and input with regards to this AISOP has not been fully onboarded, the current AISOP is void of critical elements that protect the rights and interest of the ADVAN community.
It is the submission of ADVAN and all its members, that the current AISOP does not serve collective interest, but rather permits unfair authority of certain parties over others and creates an unfriendly business framework. It portrays a clear indication of discriminatory standards where the AISOP document in section 5 sub section b (Discounts and Commissions) states that “No party will unilaterally dictate or impose rates on another party except as may be mutually agreed by upon by the parties” however in the summary submitted to the press there is a clause that states “Media rates may be increased at any time provided that at least 30 days’ notice is given prior to implementation”. Latter of which was not included on original documents, further portraying an inconsistency in expectation.
ADVAN requests that in all instances, the condition of a mutually agreed terms by both parties be upheld and not only as it applies to expectations from Advertisers.
Government has a specific and critical role in supporting industry development by providing fair and enabling legislation and guidelines for ethical business practices, this involvement however, should not overrule the constitutional rights of business entities to conduct legitimate business activities.
The perception of a discriminatory regulatory system will be counterproductive to the collective objective of creating a conducive business environment.
Consequently, in the interest of creating an inclusive free, fair, and transparent industry standard of practice, ADVAN has sent in a clear representation of expectation. ADVAN is on standby for the acknowledgment of this position and further engagement on a standard of practice framework that is in the mutual interest of all.