By Tsozungu Kombe
The Co-operatives model has been described as the best vehicle when it comes to fighting poverty in Kenya as it encourages members to embrace the culture of savings.
Deputy Co-operatives Commissioner in charge of Finance and Banking Services at the State Department of Co-operative Development, Mary Mungai stressed that Co-operatives can make a major contribution to sustainable development and in helping small businesses to be competitive. She said given this significance, Co-operative societies need to draw up strategic plans that will guide their operations. “It is through application of appropriate technology and business models and best international practices that Co-operatives can remain competitive and retain their market share,” she added.
Ms Mungai spoke during the recent opening of Imarika Sacco branch in Ukunda, Kwale County. The Kilifi-based Sacco has also spread its wings to Garsen in Tana River County as it continues to pursue its policy of expansion in the local market.
During the official launch of Garsen branch, Imarika Sacco Chairman, Richard Dzombo said the strategy of the Sacco has been to open new branches at strategic areas in the region.
He disclosed in a speech read by his vice chairman, Renson Ndoro that the Sacco is currently one of the established microfinance lenders in the country giving out loans to its members.
The Chief Guest, Mohammed Juge, Tana Delta Sub-County Administrator, urged residents of Tana River to join Saccos as a way of improving their living standards.
Available figures indicate that the Co-operatives sector has mobilized savings to the tune of Sh600 billion, has an asset base of Sh816 billion and disbursed loans to members to the tune of Sh558 billion as at December 31, 2015.
By Tsozungu Kombe