By Catherine Affadi
The management of Guinness Nigeria Plc has dismissed the insinuations that it was compelled to withdraw all advertisements for its alcoholic beverages by the sanction imposed on the firm by the Advertising Standards Panel of the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON).
A statement from the company at the weekend said: “Contrary to the claim by APCON in the widely circulated report, Guinness Nigeria Plc had withdrawn the advertisement in question before the meeting of the APCON Council which endorsed the recommendation of the ASP to impose sanction on the company.
“In fact, the decision by the ASP to recommend the withdrawal of the sanction imposed on Guinness Nigeria Plc followed a meeting between the management of the company, its marketing and media agencies and APCON in which the company established that it was not in breach of the relevant provision of the Code of Advertising Practice and Sales Promotion as of the date the decision by APCON was taken.
“At the said meeting, both parties agreed on the process of rescinding the withdrawal of certificates of approvals granted to Guinness Nigeria for the advertising of its alcoholic beverages including the submission of a letter by the company stating its side of the story,” the company stated.
The company explained that before the ASP recommended to APCON that the certificates of approval issued to Guinness Nigeria Plc be withdrawn, the company and the ASP had been in discussions in the past few months on alcoholic beverage advertising during the English Premier League (EPL) football matches on DStv.
There had been a difference of opinion between the parties on whether the watershed requirement for alcohol beverage advertising in the Nigerian Code of Advertising Practice and Sales Promotions affect terrestrial feeds from satellite television stations based outside Nigeria.