GODDIE OFOSE, Lagos
Access Bank has called for more effective collaboration among stakeholders, as the bank recently hosted relevant international organisations and other stakeholders to its inaugural Annual Sustainability Summit recently at the Bank’s head office in Victoria Island, Lagos.
Themed ‘Financing Sustainable Development’, the summit focused on providing a unique opportunity and safe place for sustainability practitioners to learn how to promote sustainable financing through offerings and services, sustainability communications and reporting.
Giving her welcome address, the Head of Sustainability, Access Bank, Omobolanle Victor-Laniyan, stressed that the country was at a critical threshold on sustainability-driven activities in Nigeria, with intensifying expectations on sustainability efforts and results from different sectors and institutions.
“Although Access Bank is renowned for its commitment to sustainability, leading several initiatives that have contributed to the global discourse including the development of the Global Responsible Banking Principles, the urgent need to scale up investments and access to finance for sustainability-focused projects, foster strategic collaboration to drive collective action and leverage on all available platforms to champion sustainability cannot be overstated,” she said.
Participants were also afforded the opportunity to engage with leading practitioners, subject matter experts, and their peers to work through the processes of setting and achieving goals, designing and delivering ambitious programs, and measuring the benefits for society as well as the bottom line.
Speaking during the panel session, the Senior Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, lauded the Bank’s efforts in promoting sustainability in the country, adding that it remains one of the key drivers in propagating the nation’s economy.
“It is exciting and inspiring when corporate organisations take up the mantle to promote sustainability in Nigeria. Access Bank has consistently led the way amongst financial institutions, and organising this summit further reinforces this position. When effected appropriately, sustainability practices can promote jobs while tackling the effects of climate change, pollution and other environmental factors that can harm and do harm people’s health, livelihoods and lives,” she stated.
Guests and panelists at the summit included Professor Kenneth Amaeshi, Director, Sustainable Business Initiative, University of Edinburgh Business School; Bekeme Masade-Olowola, CEO, CSR-in-Action; Olumide Orojimi, Corporate Communications Manager, Oando Plc; Ndidi Nnoli-Edozien, Group Chief, Sustainability and Governance, Dangote Industries Limited and other prominent industry leaders.