The International Cooperative Alliance and the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) have agreed to formulate a law that will benefit, promote and protect cooperatives throughout the African continent.
Dr. Sifa Chingoya, Regional Director for ICA Africa presented he benefits and key elements of the model law to the PAP Permanent Committee on Monetary and Financial Affairs during the March Sittings of the Permanents.
In full support of the move, Hon. Stewart Madzayo from Kenya called on his fellow legislators to give this issue their full attention. According to the Society for International Development, cooperatives in Kenya are responsible for 45% of the country’s GDP and 31% of national savings and deposits.
“I would urge my fellow Parliamentarians to take this matter seriously. In Kenya, cooperatives are a source of income to many and it is my wish that it be modelled well, so that it can be adopted by the rest of the continent,” said Madzayo.
Some of the problems faced by cooperatives across the continent include poor management, inadequate training, and lack of communication among participants. However, cooperative societies have reportedly performed a critical role in the fight against poverty by providing opportunities to create wealth through trade and the development of agriculture across the African continent.