Siaya County government is working on modalities to fund the cooperative movement in order to spur economic growth, area deputy governor, Dr. James Okumbe has said.
Okumbe said that already, the county government cabinet, led by governor Cornel Rasanga has forwarded to the assembly the Cooperative Development Fund Bill that, when passed, will enable it give loans directly to the registered cooperative societies in the area.
He was speaking today at the county headquarters during the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the county government and the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Siaya chapter for production of a monthly newsletter that will highlight the activities of the devolved government.
The deputy governor said that the county government was also considering to come up with the enterprise development Fund that will see individual entrepreneurs get loans for enterprise development.
He called on members of the KNCC&I and residents of the county at large to join cooperatives so as to benefit from the initiatives.
“Once the cooperative development fund will be passed by the county assembly, the county government will be able to give loans directly to the cooperatives and other small and medium enterprises” he said.
Okumbe said that the county had made strides towards improvement of the rural economy, adding that through the support of the county government, Siaya farmers were able to produce one million metric tonnes of cotton last year.
On the delay to resolve the revenue allocation formula in the Senate, Okumbe said that the country risked stalling should the House delay to find solution to the problem.
He said that several development projects in the county have stalled as a result of lack of funds.
The chief executive officer of the KNCC&I Siaya branch, Michael Ochieng lamented that Siaya county did not export anything last year.
“KNCC&I issues certificates of origin for all the exports on behalf of the government of Kenya and last year when branches were being issued with proceeds from the certificates, Siaya got zero” he said adding “this means that we did not export anything.”
Ochieng challenged Siaya residents to take up the challenge and exploit the available opportunities so as to join the league of counties that export goods to earn the country foreign exchange.
By Philip Onyango