The Special Adviser to Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State on cooperative matters, Mr Gbenga Awosode, said the state government had registered more than 24,000 cooperative societies in the state towards economic growth.
Awosode said this at a programme to mark the International Cooperative Day with the theme of the programme “Cooperative Ensures No One Is Left Behind” on Saturday in Osogbo.
The programme which was organised by the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Cooperative in collaboration with Federation of Osun Cooperative Limited.
Renaissance gathered that the International Cooperative Day is celebrated worldwide on the first Saturday of July every year.
Awosode said more than 16,000 registered cooperative societies had benefited immensely from the state government grants towards wealth creation.
He said the international cooperative day recognises and reaffirms the invaluable role of cooperative unions in social, economic and cultural development as well as in actualisation of social policy objectives of governments across the world.
“The essence of the annual celebration is to increase awareness about cooperative movement, highlight successes recorded by movement in the past years and to promote the core values and ideals of the cooperative movement.”
He added “Celebration of the world corporate day also aims at strengthening the international cooperative movement as well as building a strong partnership with other international actors including government, non-governmental organisations and other cross National organisations.
The SA who described cooperative societies as critical to global economic and social development explained that it has helped a lot in the creation of new ethics and ideas in the business.
Awosode said despite the huge developmental value of cooperative societies, the unions were beset with a myriad of challenges.
According to him, the challenges include; poor management, lack of cooperation among cooperators, low commitment, overdue loans and debts, among others.
He said these challenges have stifled the growth of cooperative unions in Nigeria and other developing countries.
” These challenges must be overcome if cooperative societies are to serve as tools for economic development, poverty alleviation and wealth creation. ”
Awosode, however, said the state government recognises the importance of cooperative societies as a critical political and economic force and would continue to partner with it for economic growth.
According to him, the core of values of the cooperative movement is not only in tandem with the vision of the Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola administration but also the theme of this year’s celebration as contained in the famous Green Book entitled “My Pact with the people of Osun”.
The major pact includes: Banish poverty, Banish Hunger, Banish Unemployment, Wealth Creation, Enhance Communal Peace and Progress, Restore Healthy Living Promote Functional Education all the component of the integral Action Plan not only target the people but also seek to enhance their social and material existence.
By Saheed Adeyemi, Osogbo.