State launches reforms to spur growth of cooperative societies

State Department of ?Cooperatives PS Noor Ismail. [Photo: File/Standard]

Principal Secretary in the State Department of Cooperatives Ali Noor Ismail Saturday said the Government is reviewing cooperative policy, law and regulations to create a conducive environment for the societies to thrive.

He said the new changes will help in enhancing the initiatives being pursued by county governments since cooperative movement functions were devolved.

Mr Noor revealed that formulation of a national cooperative development policy is at an advanced stage.

“The policy will provide an overarching framework that will provide direction on the growth and development of the movement in regard to the respective roles of the two levels of Government under the Constitution, as well as address the emerging issues in the ever-changing business environment,” he said.

Addressing industry stakeholders during an Afya Sacco Society annual delegates meeting at Kenyatta International Convention Centre, the PS said the Government is fast-tracking digitisation and automation of key processes such as registration of cooperatives to enhance efficiency in service delivery and targeted sub-sectors.

Kenya cooperative movement leads in Africa and is rated seventh globally in terms of member deposits mobilisation and increasing number of cooperative societies.

The movement has 22,000 registered cooperatives with a membership of more than 14 million and employes more than 500,000 Kenyans directly and another 1.5 million indirectly. The Sacco sub-sector has mobilised domestic savings in excess of Sh600 billion and an asset base of over Sh800 billion.

Commissioner of Cooperatives Mary Mungai said realisation of the reforms will be based on cooperative leaders’ determination to employ sound governance structures as well as inculcating a culture of transparency while dealing with their members.

“Nevertheless, we all have a part to play in this and the principles of good governance apply to all of the movement’s value chain players,” she said.

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