Zimbabwe ads industry reintroduces Advertising Standards Authority

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This week we received information that the local advertising industry is finally reintroducing a self-regulating association. Called the Advertising Standards Authority of Zimbabwe (ASAZIM), it was active until the late 90s when it became somewhat dormant.

The concept of ASA is quite standard globally. Its role is to ensure, among other things, ethics in advertising. Stuff that annoys consumers and slows down progress in the economy as a whole like misleading advertising, inaccuracies and such.

The local ASA will be introduced officially at an event taking place next week in Harare.

We spoke with the current chairperson of ASAZIM, Sapi Bachi, and she shared some background on the authority and the upcoming event

This Authority used to be very active in the 80’s early 90’s but with the pressure that Zimbabwe went through it became dormant. Over the last year ZAAPPA (being Zimbabwe Accredited Advertising Practitioners Association) currently chaired by Barry Manandi has been working hard to get all the structures in place to ensure that credibility and professionalism( that is adherence to code of conduct by agencies) is brought back to advertising industry. Working closing with ADMA (Advertising and Media Association- all media houses-print, outdoor and broadcast) great strides are being made to achieve this.

The Current ASA Code was crafted in 1994. There have been a lot of changes since then in the operating environment and we will embark on updating this to reflect our current environment in consultation with the the agency heads, marketers association and  of course ADMA.

The Advertising Standards Authority of Zimbabwe (ASAZIM) is an independent body that works in conjunction with ZAAPA, MAZ and ADMA. It aims to provide a prompt, accessible and cost-efficient mechanism to ensure advertising is legal, decent, honest and truthful.

ASAZIM has a duty to represent the society it serves and to emulate public sentiment, observe all statutes and uphold the Code of Advertising Practice in an impartial and objective manner.

The Code of Advertising Practice is ASAZIM’s guiding document. It is based on the International Code of Advertising Practice, prepared by the International Chamber of Commerce and accepted worldwide as the basis for domestic systems of self-regulation. ASAZIM’s Code has been specifically tailored to the Zimbabwean marketplace. It was drawn up by representatives of the local marketing and communication industries, and is amended from time to time to meet the changing needs of the industry and society.

For the launch, ASAZIM will have South Africa’s Odette van Haar, who is the CEO of Association for Communication and Advertising South Africa, speaking at next week’s event.

Bachi said that South Africa has a globally recognized advertising industry and that this is therefore an opportunity for marketers, agencies, media houses to find out and learn how SA, over the years, has a self regulation system that works and is respected and upheld by agencies and clients alike.

You can pre-register for the event here. For more about the event, you can get in touch with Stephanie or Nokhu on 304052/260.

Event Date: 27 February 2017, 11AM – 2PM
Venue: Meikles Hotel
Cost: $25

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