Corporates Commit to Fighting Covid-19
In a bid to flatten the Covid-19 curve in Kenya, Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB Bank) and Sanlam Kenya PLC and Sanlam Investments East Africa have extended a helping hand to Kenya’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund.
KCB Group CEO, Joshua Oigara, who also sits on the fund, donated Kshs 150 million to be used to fight the spread of the virus in the country and the economic impact of the virus. “We stand with the nation to help limit the spread of the virus and ease the related economic hardships faced by the communities in which we operate… ” said Oigara.
The Nairobi Securities Exchange was the first to feel the pinch of the Covid-19 pandemic as the market capitalisation shrunk by Kshs 120 billion on the day the first case was announced. On that same day, KCB Bank’s stocks dropped by seven percent.
Sanlam and its Kenyan entities, including Sanlam Life, their life insurance branch, donated Kshs 8 million to the fund which intends to supply medical equipment, as well as resources and support for poor and vulnerable communities.
The outbreak of the virus has exposed the shortcomings of the health sector in Kenya. They have had to increase their spending and direct funding towards the training of medical personnel as well as equipment to ensure that hospitals are able to deal with the pandemic. Another challenge the government has had to face is increasing awareness and sensitization of its citizens of the novel coronavirus.
“We believe that rapid and effective implementation of the health relief funding will aid in the much-desired behaviour change as people stay at home, wear personal protective equipment and maintain social distancing while practising higher standards of hygiene across the board,” said Jonathan Stichbury, the CEO of Sanlam Investments East Africa.
The government appealed to individuals and corporates, both domestic and international, as well as development partners to support in the country’s invisible war that has already claimed 10 lives.