Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has said the government is committed in supporting cooperative movements.
He said cooperative are key in driving the economy growth and social development through their ever growing members which stand at 14 million Kenyans.
“They contribute about 10 percent to our GDP,there about 23,000 cooperatives in Kenya that employ over half a million people while employing more than a million million and a half people indirectly in the inter linked sector, ” Gachagua said.
He said in 2022 the sacco deposits rose to over Sh.600,000 while processes loans amounted to Sh. 550 billion.
“It is against this backdrop we have identified and made priority the cooperative movement because of its direct contribution to the economy.President William Ruto dedicated a ministry to help cooperative movement harness their full potential,” he said.
Gachagua said he has been going round the country looking into ways they can strengthen societies.
“I have been in Meru where we held a conference to talk about coffee,next week we will be in Kericho to talk about tea and the following month we will be in Nakuru for the Milk subsector and come back to Meru to talk about Miraa,” he said.
He said they are working with Parliament ammend the Cooperative Act to among other factors enhance financial inclusion to the farmer and ordinary Kenyans.
He spoke in Kinoru stadium on Friday during the celebrations of Solution Sacco 30th anniversary.
The sacco was formed in 1993.
He was accompanied by Meru governor Kawira Mwangaza, Laikipia governor Joshua Irungu,Agriculture CS Mithika Linturi,MPS Rahim Dawood (North Imenti) John Paul Mwirigi (Igembe South), Muchangi Kalemba (Runjenjes), Dan Kiili (Igembe Central),Julius Taitumu (Igembe North) Moses Kirima (Central Imenti)Dorothy Igoki (nominated)Mugambi Rindikiri (Buuri)Mpuru Aburi (Tigania East)Elizabeth Kailemia (Meru women Rep)among others.
Meru governor Kawira Mwangaza said the consumption of illicit brews and drugs in Meru has gone down after Gachagua conducted meetings with chiefs. Gachagua is leading war on drugs and illicit brews in Mount Kenya.
Mwangaza said there is no fall out in Meru and she is concentrating on her developmental agenda.
Cooperatives CS Simon Chelugui said Meru is the third in the number of cooperative movement in the country.
Chelugui said saving culture is good for prosperity.
He said that CEO who have grown small Sacco’s to big financial institutions should be commended by the state when they are rewarding Kenya Heroes and Heroins.
CS Mithika Linturi said that farmers should be supported through financial institution to make the country food secure
He said the Kenyans should enhance saving culture.
He said in order for the country to prosper Kenyans should learn how to save.
“In NSSF people were saving only Sh.200 per month that is Sh.2400 per year if a person save for that years he would only have Sh.72000, We changed the law so that people could save more on NHIF,” Gachagua said.