Accra, Dec. 20, GNA – The Standard Chartered Bank Ghana, together with the University of Ghana Alumni Association, has provided an eye clinic at a cost of over GH₵ 60,000 to the University’s Hospital in Accra.
The project forms part of the Bank’s global initiative to tackle avoidable blindness and visual impairment under the programme “Seeing Is Believing.”
The Programme, which started in 2003, has been in action for close to 14 years, and is a collaboration between the Standard Chartered Group and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness.
Mr Kweku Bedu-Addo, Chief Executive Officer of the Standard Chartered Bank, Ghana and West Africa, said the Bank had committed to raise $100 million for the period 2003 to 2020, for the “Seeing Is Believing” Project around the globe.
He said that was being achieved through fund raising both internally as well as funds generated by the staff of the Bank.
He added that they had renovated eye clinics in Tarkwa, Takoradi, Bibiani, Sefwi Wiawso, Weija, Apam, Achimota, among others, adding “the joy is in the relief that it brings to the communities, wherever we visit.”
Mr Bedu-Addo, however, requested that government be approached to redesign the way healthcare was being funded in the country.
He said because the proceeds went into the consolidated fund, the money did not get recycled and as such, considerable investments were being run down.
He said government should be persuaded to allow funds to be recycled into the sector.
“By donating the equipment, we are re-enforcing our commitment in the fight against avoidable blindness. It is our hope as a Bank that the equipment will go a long way to benefit all the communities in this catchment area.
“It’s our way of ensuring that primary eye care is embedded in healthcare delivery in Ghana,” he said.
The Standard Chartered Bank Chief Executive said with the Bank being in the country for 120 years, “this is our token to the University that has provided most of our human resource.”
Prof Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, said the project was a good example of how partnership works, adding that no university could make any meaningful impact without its alumni.
He commended the alumni for their immeasurable contribution to the project and noted that partnering the alumni to develop the University was the way to go, especially in this era of ‘dwindling funds’.
He added that such partnership added to the infrastructure of the University.
He further thanked the Bank on behalf of the management, stating that the Standard Chartered Bank was one of the oldest banks on the campus and has a significant role in bringing the University thus far.
Mr Paa Kwesi Yankey, Chairman of the University of Ghana Alumni Association, underscored the importance of the project and said lack of eye care usually affected student performance.
He urged the Bank to revisit the facility and organise screening programmes for students and staff to check their eyesight.