The B Team leader & former Nigerian finance minister calls on business & public sectors to stand together against attacks on freedoms
Author: Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, The B Team (US), Published on: 2 March 2018
"With Freedom at Stake, Business Cannot Afford to Stay Silent", 28 Feb 2018
The world is facing a crisis of freedom. In growing numbers, authorities are restricting and denying fundamental...rights. Governments are going to increasing lengths to silence citizens, passing laws to stifle opposition and repress...political movements... Today, only two percent of the global population lives in countries with open civic space... From 2015-December 2017, 850 attack were documented on defenders working on human rights and business. These ranged from murders to brutal assaults and harassment. Civic rights [are] helping ensure open and direct lines of communication...between governments and people. This is invaluable in the face of crisis... With global suppression of...rights..., both the public and private sectors are at a crucial moment to take action. At The B Team, this sense of necessary partnership is clear. At World Economic [Forum]... several B Team Leaders participated in a panel entitled Standing Up for Social Progress...What the world needs is a new dialogue... that brings the private and public sectors together to stand up for what is right. But why should business care?...Open and free societies are healthy operating environments for companies... Corporates are beginning to realize this... [T]he continued repression of citizens’ voices is costing us. From 2015-2016, government internet shutdowns across the globe cost countries USD $2.4 billion...With so much to lose, business cannot afford to stay silent.