Celebrating President Kibaki’s legacy of empowering people and communities

Dr James Mwangi, Equity Group Managing Director and CEO, with President Mwai Kibaki.

Photo credit: Equity

A Tribute by Equity Bank

We will remember you as a leader committed to public good. You recognised that the population’s socio-economic empowerment was key in contributing to Kenya’s overall economic growth and sustainability. Your Government’s policies and structure lay the foundation for private sector to play a catalytic role in social impact programmes that transform the lives of people.

Free universal education boosts transition to secondary school

Your love for education is reflected in your personal life, having accepted your father's wish for you to attend school in pre-independence Kenya. Your pursuit for academic excellence took you to prestigious institutions of your time, including the Makerere University, where you emerged top of your class with a First Class Honours degree and proceeded to the London School of Economics, where you set a record as the first African to graduate from the school with distinction.

You embedded your love for education in Vision 2030 and revolutionised education in Kenya. You made free primary education a basic human right and gave all children equal opportunities to shape their destiny.

You embraced and supported Equity's Wings to Fly programme by sparing time to commission the annual cohorts during your term in office. The programme, which was conceptualised by Equity Group and Mastercard Foundation, came at a time when the early beneficiaries of free primary education were completing their primary schooling.

By providing needy, academically-gifted children an opportunity to access secondary education and mentorship, this programme aligned with your vision for education of children.

We were privileged to have you commission Wings to Fly programme cohorts in 2011, 2012 and 2013, during which you patiently interacted with the scholars. We were eye witnesses of your love for education and children through the many interactions you had with the Wings to Fly scholars, mentoring and inspiring them.

As a leading statesman, you shared with the scholars your personal struggles and triumphs, as well as the lessons you had learnt from the vigour of youth and the sobriety of age. You imparted your knowledge and wisdom to the future leaders, giving them building blocks for long-term success and a lasting legacy that remains a true inspiration.

President Mwai Kibaki, accompanied by Equity Group Managing Director and CEO Dr James Mwangi, officially launches the Wings to Fly Programme in January 2011.

Photo credit: Equity

Economic recovery roadmap anchored on revival of agriculture

Your Government implemented reforms in agricultural research and development, extension services, transformation of parastatals

and producer organisations, seed and breed quality improvement, agricultural financial services and the production and consumption of traditional foods.

As a private sector player with our roots in rural Kenya, our intervention in agriculture benefited from your government's policies that created an enabling environment for farmers to thrive. Our work in agriculture has revolved around financial literacy programmes for farmers and providing tailor-made financial solutions for agricultural value chains.

In 2009, we collaborated with the Ministry of Agriculture and other partners to establish Kilimo Biashara in an effort to promote the commercialisation of cereal farming. While we offered inclusive financial intermediation, Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) provided certified seeds and extension services. Our awards in agriculture forums such as the Agriculture Society of Kenya (ASK) shows, remain some of our best memories of your legacy and support for sustainable agriculture.

H.E Mwai Kibaki, third President of the Republic of Kenya (right), and the then Minister for Agricul­ture Hon William Ruto (left), at the Equity Bank's stand during the 2010 Nairobi Internation­al Trade Fair. Equity was feted for having the Best Bank stand and for being the Best Financial Institution.

Photo credit: Equity

A champion of environmental conservation and stewardship

You championed environmental stewardship, reminding us to live within our environmental means; to harbour on our minds, and demonstrate in our actions, a consideration for posterity. You were a force for good.

Equity Group today continues to support programmes focused on climate change mitigation and adaptation by increasing the adoption and usage of clean energy technologies and fuels for households, institutions, and industries.

We have availed solutions in renewable energy and energy efficiency for institutions and industries, clean cooking solutions, water harvesting and storage, solar home systems for households, solar water heating solutions, LPG, and improved biomass stoves. In addition, we continue to champion green construction as well as clean transportation. Because of your drive, we are champions of climate-smart agriculture and tree-planting, where we have planted 13.3 million trees to date.

We have continued to work with our farmers to increase agricultural production in a sustainable manner, while increasing their capacity to adapt to climate change.

At the household level, 340,000 households have been reached with renewable energy products, impacting over 1.35 million individuals. Over Ksh1.4 billion worth of clean energy devices have been distributed, saving more than Ksh3.47 billion worth of charcoal and kerosene, and over 360,000 metric tons of carbon-dioxide avoided.

We commit to continue in the journey to leave minimal environmental footprints as we scale our purpose of transforming lives, giving dignity and expanding opportunities for wealth creation, driven by our vision to be the champion of the socio-economic prosperity of the people of Africa. We thank you for leading us on this.

Social protection: Leaving nobody behind

Your Government initiated social protection policies to cater for the old, the vulnerable and the marginalised. In the spirit of public-private partnership that you championed, we played our part in facilitating innovative social payment programmes in partnership with the government and development partners. We deployed our commercial infrastructure of 190 branches, a network of over 50,000 agents, merchant locations and mobile banking, to broaden access to funds for registered beneficiaries in Kenya.

Under HE President Uhuru Kenyatta, this programme has continued to scale and we are humbled to be a partner in facilitating last-mile disbursement to the beneficiaries. To date, we have reached 4.03 million beneficiaries through social protection programmes, and we have disbursed Ksh100.7 billion through cash transfers.

Our success in Kenya enabled us to replicate the programmes in Uganda, Rwanda and South Sudan. The region celebrates you.

Photo credit: Equity

Fare thee well, father of Kenya's modern economy

We join the family, Kenyans and all global citizens who have outpoured their love, admiration and respect to one of Africa’s most treasured iconic leaders; a true son of Africa.

Your life, leadership, pursuit of excellence and progress for all Kenyans; your patriotism and charismatic servant leadership, will epitomise your legacy as one of the greatest role models of our times and for future generations. You have earned an everlasting respectful place in our hearts as a nation, and in the world community as a selfless leader. You have left an indelible mark of prosperity in the history of our land.

The Father of Kenya’s modern economy: May the Lord grant you eternal life alongside your beloved wife Mama Lucy Kibaki.

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