The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FBNBank Ghana Victor Yaw Asante has encouraged the bank’s women’s network as well as women everywhere to strive toward breaking down gender barriers in innovation and technology while creating a more diverse and inclusive world for all.
He made this remark during the bank’s International Women’s Day (IWD) celebration event held in Accra.
Highlighting the significance of women to the bank’s work and operations, he said: “As the world marks International Women’s Day, FBNBank, in its small way, dedicates the entire month of March to celebrate women in recognition of their impact on bringing positive balance to our lives and as a mark of respect for them”.
He underscored the critical role women play in economic, social and cultural development of any community, saying they can drive conversations around promoting a world free of gender bias and discrimination when given the opportunity.
“A world where women are given the freedom to thrive, grow and fulfil their highest potentials as well as contribute positively to global development is what we, at FBNBank, strive for,” he added.
He indicated that FBNBank recognises women entrepreneurship as an important source of economic growth, saying: “Women entrepreneurs innovate, initiate, engage, and run business enterprises to contribute to domestic development. They are also known for starting businesses and taking risks to operate enterprises”.
Mr. Asante underscored the significance of entrepreneurship and technological innovation roles in economic development, citing – among other things – job opportunities, skills improvement, and innovativeness as few of the beneficial outcomes.
Madam Grace Aryee, President – FBNBank Women Network, in her remarks at the event, stated that the role of women in shaping society through their personal and professional achievements cannot be over-emphasised.
She urged men to stand up and celebrate women for their contribution toward national development, saying: “Today is a special day for us, an opportunity to celebrate ourselves and appreciate one another for our tireless work and dedication to making meaningful contributions to the world”.
Dubbed ‘DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality”, Madam Aryee said this year’s IWD celebration presents yet another opportunity for women to think of new ways to take bold action about a rapidly evolving space that is not really being explored. “Women currently hold just about 27 percent of tech-related jobs while also being underrepresented in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM).
“I believe that this gap can be bridged, and it all starts with you. You have the power to break down these barriers and pave the way for future generations of women in innovation and technology. We need to participate actively in technology and digital innovation and contribute new perspectives with our unique creativity and problem-solving skills,” Madam Aryee admonished.
She further noted that at FBNBank Ghana, women contribute significantly to the workforce. “They are at the forefront to engage both our internal and external stakeholders. We also believe in empowering women financially to achieve their goals.”
While thanking the CEO of the bank for being a pillar of support to its women network, she urged women to keep working toward a world that is diverse and equitable, yet inclusive, adding that: “As we join the world in the symbolic embrace to show our solidarity, we must encourage ourselves to forge on fearlessly”.
Expressing gratitude to the women network of the bank, Mr. Asante said: “I cannot imagine banking without women, and I am proud that at FBNBank Ghana, we have women in responsible positions impacting positively on our business”.
FBNBank launches FirstGem account for women
FBNBank has launched a new product dubbed ‘FirstGem account’ as part of this year’s International Women’s Day celebration.
Introducing the product, Allen Quaye, Head of Retail Banking, FBNBank, explained that to lead the goal of empowering women professionally and financially, the bank decided to introduce the FirstGerm account – an account for women, with skewed benefits, which includes a higher interest rate reward for deposit and a lower interest rate for commercial lending.
The FirstGerm account comes in three variants – FirstGerm account for individuals, FirstGerm savings account for individuals, and FirstGerm Finance for registered businesses owned by women entrepreneurs.
Mr. Quaye added that holders of FirstGerm accounts will benefit from thought-leadership workshops, business advisory services, business skills, wealth management, investment opportunities, lower cost of banking, among others.
Farida Bedwei, a Software Engineer and a disability-rights activist, speaking during a panel discussion at the event, cautioned women on data privacy, especially the kind of personal information they put out on the Internet.