The Council of Governors, through the Agriculture and Cooperative Committee chaired by Bungoma Governor Kenneth Lusaka has proposed amendments to the draft Cooperative Bill 2023 currently in the National Assembly, on the management of Cooperatives in the country.
The Council, in their recent address to the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Cooperatives and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Development, expressed critical concerns regarding the draft Cooperative Bill 2023, emphasizing the necessity of establishing a robust legal framework in the management of cooperatives in the Country, a devolved function of County Governments as enshrined in the Constitution.
COG seeks clarity on the roles and linkages between the National and County Governments on the issues of Cooperative registration certificates, issuance of demand and agency notices, inspection of cooperative societies, inquiry into the affairs of the primary and secondary cooperatives among others.
Furthermore, the Council stated the urgency in resolving the lingering stalemate, to foster a more conducive environment for the growth and success of cooperatives in the nation.
In a high-level meeting between the Council of Governors, Agriculture and Cooperative committee and the Ministry of Cooperatives and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Development, held on Wednesday in Nairobi County, Governor Lusaka stated, “It is crucial to acknowledge and adhere to the constitutional functions of devolved governments, more so in agriculture.”
Asserting that the absence of automated systems for and management of cooperatives, are detrimental to the growth and success of cooperatives in the country.
In conclusion, COG proposed that the Ministry of Cooperatives recall the Bill submitted to the Parliament to allow incorporation of concerns raised by the Council of Governors, and alignment of the draft regulations of the Cooperative Bill with the outcome of the unbundling exercise and amendments in the Bill.
The meeting was presided over by the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Cooperatives and MSMEs Development, Simon Chelugui, and attended by Governors; Mutahi Kahiga (Nyeri),Dr Paul Otuoma ( Busia), COG CE