By Jackson Okoth
Westlands Sub-County in Nairobi has the highest Sacco saver in Kenya with Sh 94 million worth of deposits.The Director of Co-operatives, Nairobi County Dolphine Aremo revealed this during Safaricom Sacco Annual General Meeting (AGM) held recently at Desmond Tutu Hall, Nairobi.
She also disclosed that Nairobi County leads in the country with total Sacco savings worth Sh 250 billion.
“The secret to achieving high savings in a Sacco is not to cash in dividends or interest on deposits cheques but to capitalize them,” said Aremo.
Available figures indicate that there are over 3,000 active co-operative societies in Kenya with membership of over 1.5 million. While there are 174 licensed Deposit-Taking Saccos in the country, 46 are located in Nairobi County.
Mwalimu National, Stima Sacco and Kenya Police Sacco are the three DT Saccos with the largest balance sheets in Kenya, all with their head offices in Nairobi. Mwalimu National has assets worth Sh46 billion, Stima Sacco Sh32 billion and Kenya Police Sacco Sh28.9 billion.
“In order to improve the capital base, DT Saccos need to conduct share drives so as to have the financial muscle that can handle the business they are controlling,” said Aremo.
Impressive growth in Nairobi’s Sacco sector is happening when members of co-operative societies in the county are being encouraged to participate in the housing projects, so as to improve returns to members.
“Nairobi County has several infrastructure re-generation projects including rehabilitation of old council houses, roads and water supply systems. Some of the old estates that will be demolished include old houses in Jerusalem, Jericho, Bahati and Makadara. Co-operatives have an opportunity to participate in the rebuilding of these housing units,” said Wachira Gichohi, Chief Executive Officer-Department of Co-operatives, Trade and Tourism, Nairobi County.