Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii has said that his administration will continue providing financial support to cooperatives in the region.
He said that cooperatives are one of the sectors with great potential to employ a large number of jobless youth.
While speaking during a forum that brought together women in Cooperatives and MSMEs in Eldoret, Bii noted that the county has 775 registered cooperatives with a membership of over 120,000 members.
“These Cooperatives have accumulated Ksh2.3 billion in deposits and have an asset base of Ksh5.8 billion. They had a turnover of Ksh1.8 billion last year and that is why my government is keen to support them,” he said.
He said that in alignment with the government’s Bottom-Up Economic Transformative Agenda (BETA), the Nguzo Kumi blueprint and the County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP), his administration has put plans in place to enhance capacity building, revive dormant cooperatives, engage in value addition, develop infrastructure, adhere to the 30 per cent Access to Government
Procurement Opportunities (AGPO) and provide affordable financing through the County Inua Biashara Fund targeting MSMEs.
“We are also focusing on the provision of the County Enterprise Fund for cooperatives and partnering with other financial institutions. This includes facilitating access to local and international markets by supporting participation in trade fairs, exhibitions and product
development for the export market in partnership with KEPROBA and other government agencies,” he said.
Bii lauded Kurur Women Co-op Society based in Ziwa as the best in the county despite being run and managed by elderly women.
Cooperatives and MSMEs Development Cabinet Secretary (CS) Simon Chelugui said that his Ministry will not only work closely with counties to support cooperatives but also promote women-led cooperatives and businesses.
“I want to challenge cooperatives to embrace value addition across various sub-sectors for maximum benefit. My Ministry will partner with county governments to ensure that Cooperatives, Saccos and MSMEs get the best atmosphere to flourish,” he added.
By Wasike Elvis
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