In keeping with its commitment to making a difference in society through philanthropy, Access Bank PLC, on Saturday, 17 December, hosted the second edition of the Access Bank Polo Day in South Africa at the famed Val de Vie Polo Club in Cape Town. Organised in partnership with Fifth Chukker, the Polo Day once again delivered on some commendable fundraising accompanied by plenty of polo. The event saw Access Bank raise over R2.6 million to bolster the education of underprivileged children in South Africa through the Nelson Mandela Foundation.
In his address, the Group Chief Executive Officer of Access Corporation, Herbert Wigwe, stressed the need to pay more attention to child education while reiterating the financial institution’s pledge to give underserved children access to quality learning.
“One of the greatest problems we find on the continent is that we don’t pay enough attention to child education and there are different studies that have highlighted the increasing number of South African children who drop out of school at early stages due to different reasons including poor performance, lack of funding, among others. Nonetheless, we must recognise the importance of child education to nation-building and play our part to ensure hope is restored to our children, our communities, South Africa and indeed, the entire continent.”
Wigwe maintained that 12 years ago, the Access Corporation decided to act and positively impact the lives of underprivileged children in Africa, and the project that started with impacting 400 children in Nigeria has seen financial institution change the lives of over 14,000 in underserved communities. “Hence, I’ll like to reiterate that our goal through the Access Bank Polo Day is to ensure that all children, no matter where they live or what their circumstances are, have the chance to access quality education, and ultimately inspire them to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more,” he added.
In May 2021, Access Bank PLC formally flagged-off its operations in South Africa as a strategic step in the organisation’s vision of delivering a robust banking operation that connects key African markets.
Speaking on the subsidiary’s growth, the Chief Executive Officer, Access Bank South Africa, Sugendhree Reddy, said, “Since our launch, we have made substantial strides in scaling what was a small business and commercial banking division to steadily becoming one of the key players in the continental trade. We are indeed proud to say we are making significant strides in realising our business goals. In the first quarter of 2023, we will be launching our retail division, therefore, making us a full-service commercial and retail bank. Our philosophy at Access Bank South Africa is to foster partnerships with our customers, as we believe that as our customers grow, so would we.”
The event was graced by several dignitaries from across the continent including the Chairman, Coronation Capital, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede and his wife, Ofovwe Aig-Imoukhuede; Chairman, Access Bank PLC, Dr Ajoritsedere Awosika; Chairman, Fifth Chukker Polo and Country Club, Adamu Atta, Doreen Wigwe among others.
The first edition of the Access Bank Polo Day raised the sum of R360,000 for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Trust Fund (NMCF), while additional funds generated from the sale of artworks at the event went to the Foundation.