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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

When it comes to building a good and favourable image for an organization or establishment, certain factors must be taken into consideration. These factors constitute the basic features of the practice of public relations. They include employee and public attitude performance, communication and good programme activities of public interest.

Public Relations is thus the art and science of analyzing trends, predicting their consequences, counseling organization leadership and implementing planned programmes of action which will serve both an organization’s and public interest. The very nature of public relations is fashioning good policies for the organization, formulating and actualizing these policies and ensuring credible service to the public. Nolte (1974), cited in Ajala (2001) says, there are two requirements for success in the field of public Relation. First, the person involved in Public Relations practice must have an agreeable personality.  Second, the person must be able to communicate. The most beautiful person in the world will be a complete failure in this field, if he or she cannot communicate and a good communicator will be stopped if he has a negative personality. Public Relations practitioners must be able to liaise well with the public. Public Relations practice is about truth, reputation, credibility, integrity and mutual understanding. He must be able to plan, manage, control his subject and above all protect his name in any organization source. The good image of an organization depends on the co-operation and efforts of the personnel or employees. Udoakah (2000:1) states that:

This therefore, goes to underscore the point that the act of building a good reputation for an organization, which is the essence of public relations is a teamwork, a collective responsibility of those employed in the organization. Successful Organizations pay primary attention to their public. For organizational goals, effective employee relations must be employed which will result to “continuity of work without strike”, this is one of the conditions for success of an establishment. Public Relations practice is communicating effectively making sure that Staff know what need to be done, understand why it is necessary, have a chance of using their knowledge, skill and also feel committed to achieving the organizational goals. Arnott (1987), cited in Ajaha (2001). Public Relations management in an organization is directing and controlling the activities of lower level employees by sending messages down through normal channels. Feedback from downward information flow must be sent up as this provides managers with the information they need in decisions making.

For an effective and purposeful Public Relations perception of an organization, it is essential that all members of the organization adopt and participate in the philosophy of sound Public Relations and the recognition that the practice permeates every facet of the organization’s activities. The benefit accruing to an organization or establishment with sound Public Relations or attitude of its personnel need not be over-stressed. An establishment that fosters and ensures proper public Relations behaviour in all its dealings with its public is strongly endeared to its publics. Such an establishment is always seen in good light by the public, and a close rapport established between them.

The Cross River State Judiciary Headquarters is one establishment whose attitude of the personnel needs to be assessed in line with the principle of Public Relations and the expectation of the public.

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