Co-Operative Societies As A Voluntary Organization In Poverty Alleviation
1.1 Background Of The Study
The impact of co-operative societies in the reduction of poverty in Nigeria and globally can not be over emphasized.
“Robin (2011:119) defines cooperative societies as an association for the primary purpose of promoting its members and societal financial interest in that they participate in the enterprise as consumers, suppliers”.
Any return over and above a normal returns remains in the business or be divided between the members on the basis of the volume of their business with the enterprise. None of their members have any personal liability for the enterprise liabilities.
“Long Rich (2013:592) in his book title: cooperative enterprises and poverty reduction in Ghana asserted that: cooperative societies are autonomous associations formed and democratically directed by people who come together to share common economic, social and cultural need”.
Founded on the principle of participatory governance, co-operative societies are governed by those who use their services: their members. Lonuge rich further expand that based on the principles of empowerment, education, and community, co-operative societies operate laterally in promoting, participating on both with-in their own organization, and through a focus on community interaction and support. Over the years co-operative societies have long been recognized to play important roles in the societies that translate into the improvement of living condition of the masses. As well as their members particularly low-income earning cures of the population. Being voluntary, democratic and self offer the institutional frame work through which local communities gain control over the productive activities from which they obtain efforts and economic activities their live hood (OFEIL2011:14).
Participating members taps the energies of groups’ efforts and economic activities that they would not have otherwise been able to carry out on their own there by embanking their chances of improving their living conditions. It is for this reason that co-operative societies continue to be promoted in Akwa Ibom State in particular and Nigeria as a whole and other parts of the developing world as come of the preferred instrument for poverty alleviation.
“Hussi, Paul, Zazi, Mathew, and rose 2013 states that cooperative societies is primarily set up to alleviate poverty among people because the purpose of a cooperative society, is to meet the common, felt needs of the members and the general public on social economic needs as well as cultural aspiration of the individual there by complementing the effort of government towards the alleviation of poverty in the societies”.
Co-operative societies in Akwa Ibom state is aimed at receiving the policies towards reduction of poverty in the state in terms of the economics, cultural, social and psychological condition of both it’s members and the general public. It has also been noted that co-operative societies made tremendous efforts in drastically reducing the poor standards of living of the poor masses in the state.
“According to (Effiong, 2012) He put it thatmmeasures put in place by co-operative societies include, Encouraging the poor to save little money that be encountered, so that it may be conveniently solve the problems, creating opening and viable avenues for the less privilege to benefit from government grants, and any other credit facilities out side their places of work in order to enable them solve immediate problems and others top benefits from them, simulation of economics growth through the engagement of semi skilled and unskilled labor in Productive activities minimizing rural-urban drift through the improvement of rural communities and finally empowering the environment in order to arrest environmental deregulation”.
In observance of the international day for the eradication of poverty in Nigeria, a panel discussion of the roles of cooperative in poverty reduction was organized by the division for social policy and development of economic and social affairs the purpose of he panel discussion was to highlight the important role co-operatives are playing towards achieving the millennium development goals (MDGS) of full and productive employment eradication of poverty, social integration and the advancement of woman. Speakers at the conference state that:-
“Cooperatives are work in almost every country of the world and economic sector. More than 760 million people around the world are engaged in the cooperative movement. Whether a rural cooperative in Benin which ploughs back upgrading roads, or a saving and credit cooperative in Sri lanka providing insurance and postal services to its members, a cooperative can play a significant role in fulfilling development objectives”.
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