, NAIROBI, Kenya, April 19- Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore has been appointed to the United Nations Global Compact Board, a voluntary UN initiative that encourages businesses globally to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies.
The announcement was made on Thursday by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.
Collymore would serve as an honorary board member for a period of three years.
“This is seen as a recognition of Safaricom’s commitment to environmental sustainability and anti-corruption issues as well as the work it is undertaking to address the Millenium Development Goals on Maternal and Child health,” a statement from Safaricom stated in part.
The UN Global Compact Board is the world’s largest corporate citizenship initiative that encourages corporate support for Millenium Development Goals and corporate adherence to human rights,good labour practices, support for the environment and anti-corruption.
“As Safaricom, we feel it is important for companies to report on their operations from a holistic perspective and to report on their sustainability credentials. Corporate governance and ethics are a key factor that underpins a company’s reputation,” Collymore said of the appointment.
Last year, Collymore made a presentation before the UN General Assembly on the Secretary General’s Every Woman Every Child Initiative where he highlighted Safaricom’s commitment to improve maternal health and reduce child mortality using mobile technology.
“In Kenya we have one doctor for every 10,000 patients. Bearing in mind that we have more than 25 million mobile phones and less than 450 hospitals, it goes without saying that mobile technology should be used to create effective solutions for our healthcare challenges,” the Safaricom CEO said.
“We realise that as a telecommunications company, the use of mobile technology for health purposes can revolutionise society’s ability to deliver, access and use health information to promote health, fight disease and respond to medical emergencies,” he added.
In partnership with the Kenyan Ministries of health, AMREF, World Vision, Care, NetHope and other non-governmental organisations, Safaricom supports the Kenya Integrated Mobile Maternal Newborn and Child Health Information Platform.
The mobile service provider offers solutions that range from SMS reminders to monitoring and tracking the mothers and children via a mobile interface carried out by Community Health Workers.
The UN Global Compact Board which is comprised of 30 members is chaired by the UN Secretary General a provides high level strategic advice relating to the UN Global Compact and at a more general level, the evolving United Nations-Business relationship.
Members are appointed by the Secretary General on recommendation from the board Nominating Committee, based on input from the Global Compact Office.