FCT reiterates commitment to create enabling environment for cooperatives.

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The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCT) Administration has reiterated its commitment to create an enabling environment for cooperatives societies to thrive in the territory.

The FCT Acting Secretary, Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, Mr Ibe Chukwuemeka, said this in Abuja on Saturday, at the grand finale of the 2021 International Day of Cooperatives.

The Day with the themeRebuild Better Togetherhas been set aside by the UN General Assembly to advocate the commitment of member nations towards repositioning cooperative societies towards sustainable livelihood and socio-economic development.

According to him, there is no gainsaying in the fact cooperative societies worldwide are critical to addressing the triple challenges of unemployment, poverty and economic inequalities in the society.

“It is to this end that the FCT Administration is looking at ways to reorganise and reposition the cooperative societies as a vehicle to eradicating poverty.

“In the FCT, which is one of the fastest-growing in terms of and population, the trajectory of usual collaboration between the administration, the Abuja Cooperative Federation (ABCOF) and the National Cooperative Financing Agency of Nigeria (CFAN) has been very productive.

“It is in recognition of the role of cooperative in engendering inclusive growth and development in the society that the FCT Administration embarked on reforms to reposition the regulation and practice of cooperative societies in the FCT.

“Through the upgrading of the cooperative unit to a full-fledged department with the appointment of substantive director in 2019, to take charge of the affairs of cooperatives in the FCT,” he said.

Chukwuemeka said that the upgrading of the unit was in compliance with the Nigeria Cooperative Societies Act 224 Cap 98Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (LFN).

Earlier, Mr Emmanuel Atama, Secretary, CFAN, said that the COVID-19 Pandemic had thrown a lot of challenges for individuals, families, groups and societies in which cooperatives exist.

Atama said that it was in the light of these present realities that the UN and the International Cooperative Alliance fixed the theme of the 2021 International Day of Cooperatives.

He said that in light of the theme “Rebuild Better Together’’, the cooperative movement adopted the following strategies which include “Build individual and group capacity to meet their goals in life.

“Create access to finance through a robust guarantee system.

“Secure members’ future with good pension plan “Give members a good health plan to guarantee a healthy mind and body.

“COVID-proof our activities through the use of technology to drive meetings, e-learning and business transactions.

“Use technology to checkmate all forms of security threats and challenges that have made agriculture business enterprise development difficult,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that awards were given to individuals and organisations that have contributed to the growth of cooperatives in the country.