MASERU — Standard Bank has been awarded the Excellence in Business Action award for its work in fighting tuberculosis, malaria and HIV and Aids.
The award was given by the Global Business Coalition on HIV and Aids, TB and malaria for the work it has done with the Global Fund.
The Global Fund was set up in 2002 to fight the three diseases and the group provides a quarter of all international financing for Aids.
Standard Bank has since 2008 been working closely with the Global Fund to fight the diseases after it signed a pro-bono services partnership with the Fund.
“Standard Bank’s role as a partner is to provide financial and project management expertise and also practical support services for grant-receiving projects to ensure that funds reach the grantees in a timely manner,” Standard Bank said in a statement.
“Standard Bank provides free advisory services and training to in-country Global Fund grant recipients in order to up-skill their personnel in the area of financial management.
“In signing the partnership, Standard Bank demonstrated its commitment to fighting disease in Africa, its main market.
“The partnership has enabled Standard Bank to meet the needs of African communities by using its core competencies to improve the financial and operational management performance of Global Fund recipients, while aligning its efforts with its long-term business interests.”
The statement said the partnership between the bank and the fund began in 2009 in four pilot countries — Lesotho, Nigeria, Swaziland and Uganda — with Mozambique and Zimbabwe being added this year.
“The Global Fund’s partnership with Standard Bank is an excellent example of how the corporate sector in Africa can play a constructive role to support the fight against the three diseases,” Professor Michel Kazatchkine, the executive director of the Global Fund, said.
“By supporting programme implementers in financial management, Standard Bank is increasing the effectiveness of the money invested by the Global Fund.”
Standard Bank Africa chief executive, Clive Tasker, said the award has proven that the bank is committed to improving health with particular interest in combating the spread of Aids.
“In 2008, we were awarded the GBC’s award for business excellence for our HIV and Aids wellness programme,” Tasker said.
“This new award further demonstrates that we are more than just a bank, but a partner to our communities in Africa and are committed to creating meaningful partnerships and solutions that will contribute to the success to the continent.
“The award is an endorsement on our continuous efforts to be relevant to our communities and we are proud to have been able to have these efforts recognised.”
Standard Bank is a South Africa-based banking giant with a presence in about 18 countries in Africa, and is one of the largest banks in South Africa in terms of assets.