Mr Temi Popoola, Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Exchange Ltd., (NGX), has called on organisations to adopt sustainable business practices and report sustainability performance to stakeholders.
Popoola made this call while speaking at the Digital Closing Gong Ceremony, organised by NGX in celebration of the 2022 World Environment Day themed, “Only One Earth,” yesterday in Lagos.
In his opening remarks, Popoola said such adoption would promote inclusivity in transformational initiatives for the economy and society.
According to him, the critical roles required of the private sector in actualising the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement now enjoys some clarity.
Popoola said such businesses would need to incorporate environmental and social factors into their operations and activities.
He said, “We have only one earth and we all have a part to play in preserving it.
“For this reason, NGX created the Facts Behind the Sustainability Report platform to promote transparency in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) disclosures by showcasing the sustainability performance and reporting amongst companies listed on NGX.
“In developing this unique platform, the Exchange’s objectives were to mainstream the adoption of sustainability reporting amongst listed companies.
“This is to increase the availability of decision-useful ESG data that investors can utilise in making investment decisions.”
Speaking further on the reason for celebrating the 2022 World Environment Day with specific companies, the CEO said it was important to celebrate businesses that understood the strategic competitive advantage that sustainability created.
He said it was also to honour listed companies that were setting an example by disclosing their sustainability performance.
“For this year’s World Environment Day celebrations, we have chosen to celebrate companies that have demonstrated leadership in sustainability reporting by leveraging the NGX Facts Behind Sustainability Report platform for good reason.
“Our commendation goes to the Boards and executive management of Courteville Business Solutions Plc, Dangote Cement Plc, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, Lafarge Africa Plc and Seplat Energy Plc who have leveraged the Facts Behind the Sustainability Report platform since the platform was launched in 2019,” he added.
Group Managing Director, Courteville Business Solutions, Dr Adebola Akindele, at the event, discussed initiatives embarked on to align his organisation with the SDG goals.
Akindele said such efforts included setting up a social capital management team that trained stakeholders on sustainable business practices, workplace diversity, and cultural background and language.
He further suggested the introduction of active carbon trading equipment for motorists to regulate vehicular carbon emissions.
“We are at the forefront of demonstrating sustainable behaviour at Lafarge Africa Plc,” said Mr Khaled El Dokani, Country CEO, Lafarge Africa Plc.
El Dokani, who was represented represented by Lolu Akinyemi, Chief Finance Officer and Executive Director of the company, highlighted some strategies deployed by Lafarge Africa towards providing sustainable building solutions.
Others include: creating a zero-waste initiative, implementing sustainable manufacturing, utilising renewable energy and deploying rail transportation for distribution of products to end-users, thereby reducing carbon emissions.
Mr Michel Puchercos GMD/CEO, Dangote Cement Plc, represented by Mr Guillaume Moyen, Group Financial Officer, Dangote Cement Plc, said there was the need for collective efforts in prioritising the environment, one that Dangote Cement through key initiatives, had unlocked.
Also, Mr Omoboyede Olusanya, GMD/CEO, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, represented by Mr Sadiq Usman, Director, Group Strategy and Stakeholder Relations, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, identified initiatives embarked on by Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc.
Olusanya said those initiatives promoted sustainable supply chain management where operations had been aligned with product sustainability themes.
“Beyond installing capacity banks, sustainability initiatives around recycling to save N250 million in product packaging have been introduced to our operations,” he said.
In his closing remarks, Popoola, reaffirmed NGX’s commitment to fostering the growth of long-term sustainable finance, toward combatting climate change and environmental concerns across Africa.
According to him, it is also upscaling its platforms to advance sustainable development in new ways that reflect the risks and opportunities presented by climate change and the SDGs.