Saccos spell out role of national and county governments in their operations

In Summary

• Acting commissioner Didacus Ityeng' has said county governments will retain promotion, appraisals, daily supervision and value addition activities.

• The national government will also be mandated with carrying out inquiries, inspections and investigations.

 

Co-operative Alliance of Kenya CEO Daniel Marube,
Co-operative Alliance of Kenya CEO Daniel Marube,
Image: FILE

Audit of Savings and Credit cooperatives societies’ will now be done by the national government, a stakeholders forum agreed yesterday.

It was agreed that the registration and delisting of Saccos also be handled by the national government even though the C0-operative sector is a devolved function.

The national government will also be mandated with carrying out inquiries, inspections and investigations in cases of loss of funds.

Counties will take up the role of  promotion, appraisals, daily supervision and value addition activities.

This the meeting said will spell out clear roles by the national and county governments in the running of Saccos. 

The meeting as attended by the acting commissioner for co-operative development Didacus Ityeng',  Sacco boards and the Co-operatives Association of Kenya. 

Counties were allowed to provisionally register specific co-operatives at the lower levels.

“Registration and cancellation of co-operative societies will be done by the national government. It will also maintain a register of approved audit firms in the co-operative sector,” Ityeng' said.

It is expected that adherence to the policy will end interference of the county governments in the Saccos since the new constitution came into place.  

“We hope the policy won’t delay further. We await acceptance from the council of governors before it is passed as Sessional paper by cabinet,” CAK chief executive Daniel Marube said.

 

The meeting called for the elimination of proposed revision on three year limit for boards of governance and have  leaders legible to serve more than two terms with a chance for re-election.

Every society will be required to have a vetting committee for leaders.

According to the ministry, there were 5055 agro-based marketing co-operatives in Kenya by end of 2017.

The co-operatives were mainly involved in coffee, dairy, pyrethrum, livestock, cereals and cotton production and marketing and had a combined turnover of Sh14 billion and an asset base of Sh481billion in 2017.

According to Marube, the high assets base and returns have attracted private firms with interests of high profits in the societies, offering to deepen their financial strength.

CAK members have however opposed such involvement in capital ventures.

 “It is possible to involve private firms and have them takeover the boards and disrupting their core functions. Let’s all be careful in this as we leave the subject open for discussion as the policy operates in the next 20 years,” he said.

The investment will only be done through a partnership of members and not a legislative setting where the society is not involved.

The draft policy, however, proposes the that the state should offer incentives to attract co-operative enterprises to participate in government securities.