Public-private partnerships only way to mitigate climate impact – Veep

  • Bawumia wins SSI Disruptive Digital Pioneer Award
  • more than 30 companies, individuals honoured at 2022 SSI Awards

Vice President Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has reiterated the need for strong collaboration between the private and public sectors to reduce the impact of climate change facing the globe.

“The benefits of synergy between the public and private sectors cannot be overstated. There is a very tall list of instances and impacts of safe partnerships, but the most practical example of this is the joint response of both parties in the pandemic,” he said in a speech read on his behalf by Professor Yaw Gyan Baffour, Chairman of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC).

He was speaking at the 6th edition of the Sustainability and Social Investment (SSI) Awards, an award scheme that honours individuals and businesses for their consistent investments in socially responsible programmes which have impacted and continue to impact society. The Vice President was honoured as the SSI Disruptive Digital Pioneer. His award was picked up by Prof. Gyan-Baffour.

Dr. Bawumia noted that humans have inadvertently contributed in one way or another to the current state of the planet.

Professor Yaw Gyan Baffour receiving the award on behalf of Vice President Dr. Bawumia

“As we speak, global temperatures have risen by 1.8 degrees or 1 degree centigrade between 1901 and 2020; and the rise in global sea level has accelerated from 1.7 millimetres a year throughout most of the 20th century to 3.2 millimetres a year since 1993. The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has risen by 25 percent since 1958, and about 40 percent since the Industrial Revolution,” he said.

But he believes that just as humanity came together to fight a pandemic, such collaboration between private and public can easily help mitigate against the climate change impact as is being already felt.

“It was a sharing of other resources, including time and strategies, which brought out the best in us at a time when humanity was most under attack. It is evident in my mind, and I trust in yours as well, that if we are to truly witness meaningful transformation in this regard (climate action), then we will need the private and public sectors to once again collaborate extensively,” he said.

Winners of the night 

At the well-organised event which attracted players within the industry and some government officials, Vodafone Ghana Foundation emerged as winner of the SSI Foundation/Company of the Year. The foundation, whose strategic focus is to use mobile technology to address key developmental issues in the areas of digital education, health and community developmentm also picked up SSI Team of the Year and Best Company in Project Promoting Good Health and Wellness, as well as Best Company in Supporting Health Institutions of the Year.

Anglogold Ashanti bagged the Best Company in Providing Health Facilities; Best Health Awareness Education Programme; Best Company in Promoting Gender Equality, Diversity and Inclusion; Best Company in Project Supporting Educational Institutions; Best Company in Good Governance & Transparency in Sustainability Reporting.

Volta River Authority took home Best Company in Climate Change Mitigation Projects; Best Wash Initiative of the Year; SSI Project of the Year (Environment); Net Zero Carbon Strategy of the Year; and SDG Pioneer of the Year, with the VRA CEO, Emmanuel Antwi-Darkwa, picking up the Climate Change Leadership award. MTN Ghana also took home Best Company in Economic Empowerment; Best Company in Employee Volunteering Initiatives Best Company in Educational Sponsorship Project; SSI Project of the Year (Socio-Economic).

Golden Star Wassa Ltd. took home Best Company in Girl Child Education & Empowerment Programme; Best Company in Project Promoting Road Safety, Education & Practices; Best Company in Project Providing Educational Facilities. Fidelity Bank Ghana Ltd. grabbed both Best Company in Charitable Giving and Best Company in Youth Development & Empowerment Project; while Total Energies Marketing Ghana PLC took home the Sustainability & Operational Excellence and Best Company in Supporting SME’s & Start-Ups awards.

Others award-winners were UBA Ghana Ltd., Ecom Ghana, Access Bank Ghana PLC, JRA Cosmetics Ltd., Advans Ghana Savings & Loans, Absa Bank Ghana, B5 Plus Group Ltd., Lister Hospital & Fertility Centre, Vivo Energy Ghana, Ghana Shippers Authority, FBN Bank Ghana, Interplast Ltd., Absa Bank Ghana, Opportunity International Savings & Loans, Absa Bank Ghana, Access Bank Ghana PLC, Karpowership Ghana Co. Ltd., Ghana National Gas Co. Ltd., Ecobank Ghana Ltd., Baraka Impact Ghana Ltd. and Bel-Aqua.

Further call for public-private partnership

The awarding board’s chair, Diana Heyman Adu, in an address urged organisations to embed in their organisational structure sustainable activities that will help in enhancing the organisations’ climate effort profiles.

“From increasing stakeholder engagements, social interactions and cooperation between community members, groups and partners to increase community pride, morality, spirit and physical and social wellbeing, among others, is what we seek to achieve when we contribute to a sustainable environment.

“It is indeed true to say that many companies are concerned with well-being of the environment and communities in which we operate; however, we still believe that more needs to be done. The SDGs consist of 17 goals and are sub-divided into 169 targets. These are applicable across both developing and developed countries. In brief, the SDGs help to end poverty, hunger, war and inequality – and clearly, governments alone cannot achieve these goals; hence the call for more collaboration between public-private enterprises to help in the fight.”

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