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MTN explains reason for widening scope of CSR

By Emmanuel Elebeke

For Wale Goodluck, the Executive Director, Corporate Services, MTN, the success and achievement of a responsible corporate organization is not just measured by how much profit it was able to make in a year, or by expansion of its operations, but by how far it could go in  reaching out to the needy in its host community. To him, any organization that neglects the welfare of its host community does so at its own peril.

It was on this basis that the MTN Executive Director in a  recent event explained the reason behind the  decision taken by the telecom company recently to step up its efforts in the area of providing humanitarian support to different category of individuals across the country, through its foundation (MTN Foundation), the specialist vehicle set up by MTN to implement its corporate social investment initiatives.

He said  MTN in this intervention mission is targeting  three major  areas: education, healthcare and economic empowerment, respectively.

Rather than focus only on orphanage homes in Lagos state, Goodluck said “MTN digs deeper, visiting other areas  in addition, orphanages in the more remote locations across the country.”

Goodluck  explained that this shift from the usual practice is informed by the stack realities in the country.  “We want to continue to play a critical role in such key sectors as education, healthcare and economic empowerment, working through specialized NGOs to produce sustainable results.

“We find that we are regularly regaled with applications for help by thousands of Nigerians suffering from one ailment or the other and who most often are at the risk of death in the absence of help,” he stated.

Continued, the MTN Director further said   “as humans, we find that it is often impossible to resist such pleas, knowing that these individuals did not choose the situations they find themselves. A baby with a hole in the heart certainly had no choice in the matter,” adding  that while MTN cannot possibly address the barrage of requests it receives in this direction, it strives to identify and respond as best as it can to those which are most pressing and in which sufferers hardly have any alternatives.
Many of the cases, the MTN Executive Director said are of one form of cancer or the other.
It is on the basis of the frequency of these requests for assistance, he said that MTN decided to commit to helping enhance local capacity to deal with cancer.

It will be recalled that of late,  the company through its Foundation has almost concluded arrangements to make mammography machines available to public hospitals across the country. Mammography machines are equipment that are used in detecting cancerous cells in a woman’s breasts.

On completion of the project,  it is hoped that the machine would provide services for early detection and this will enable many more Nigerian women seek treatment on time. In the plan for which beneficiary public health institutions have already been identified, MTN said one mammography machine will be made available to one public hospital in each of Nigeria’s six geopolitical zones of the country.


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