Mr. Gayheart Mensah, External Affairs Director of Vodafone Ghana, has said that private sector players have immense potential to accelerate the attainment of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Ghana, if they put their minds and efforts behind it.
Speaking at a side-event during the UN High Level Political Forum (HLPF) at the UN Headquarters in New York on the theme, “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality”, Gayheart called for a relook at how successful organisations are assessed, in order to ensure that the private sector contributes more significantly to delivering on the SDGs.
“Organizations should not be assessed only by how profitable or economically sustainable they are. The social and economic sustainability of their activities should be key components of any assessment, and not just left to conscience, morality and ethics. This will make organizations strive for partnerships and the appropriate governance framework that will support the attainment of the 2030 Agenda,” he suggested.
He said that Vodafone is persuaded that there is something more valuable than just being a profitable organization and that is the impact an organization has on people and communities. That, he stated, explains the current partnership Vodafone has with the Government of Ghana, particularly the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS).
Vodafone Ghana, two years ago, entered into a partnership with the GSS to use mobile-derived customer insights to make better predictions for sustainable development and life-saving decisions. Using aggregated and anonymized CDRs, the GSS will analyse and generate statistics that will support decision-making in public health delivery, humanitarian, agriculture and development planning. The project, tagged, “Data for Good”, receives support from Vodafone UK, Hewlett Foundation with technical support from Flowminder, a not-for profit organisation.
Gayheart said “when we get to the junction where the operations of the majority of organisations contribute to empowerment and inclusiveness, and also promote gender equality, that will be a major leap towards delivering on Agenda 2030”. He pledged Vodafone’s commitment to partner government to effectively track trends in health, agriculture and population movements among others and said “this demonstrates what Private-Public Partnership (PPP) can contribute to the attainment of the SDGs”.
Government’s delegation to the UN Forum was led by Minister for Planning, Prof, George Gyan-Baffour and included the Chief Executive Officer of Stanbic Bank, Alhassan Andani, Ambassador Nana Effah-Apenteng, Paramount Chief of Bompata and Country Director for SEND Ghana, George Osei-Akoto Bimpeh.