The Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffour Awuah, has said that the government, recognising the important role cooperatives play, has resolved to provide them any assistance that will make them much stronger to be at the forefront of developing local communities to improve their standards of living.
To demonstrate the government’s commitment to this pledge, Baffour Awuah said a draft bill to that effect is currently undergoing stakeholder consultations for subsequent submission to the Attorney-General for the necessary procedure leading to its passage.
“It, therefore, behooves on the leadership of the cooperative societies to drive this agenda. As a mother Ministry, the Employment and Labour Relations Ministry would add its weight to the efforts of the cooperative societies,” he noted.
Mr. Awuah, who is also the Member of Parliament for Sunyani East, made this revelation when addressing representatives of the various cooperative societies in the country at the CLOGSAG Auditorium in Accra last Saturday, July 28, 2018.
The event was to commemorate International Cooperative Day, which was celebrated the world over under the theme “Sustainable societies through cooperation”.
He said despite the enormous contributions made by cooperatives in the informal and local economies, there is still great potential and room for improvement in the most sustainable manner.
“There is room to improve the productivity and output of the nation, and there is the need to do this in the most sustainable manner. The cooperatives system already has the principles, systems and processes to ensure inclusive and sustainable development. Several countries, including South Korea, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and India, have demonstrated the pivotal role cooperatives play in enhancing the contribution of the private sector to socioeconomic development. It is my strong belief that the role that cooperative movement has to play in the development of all sectors of the economy, especially, the rural and informal economy, has been hugely untapped,” he stressed.
To ensure that cooperatives harness their full potentials, the Employment and Labour Relations Minister said the government has initiated several policies and programmes such as the Planting for Food and Jobs, One District One Factory, One Village One Dam and several others that the cooperatives could tap into to realise their objectives.
For instance, he said, cooperative societies could be at the forefront of the One District One Factory programme, since it is tailored for the development of local communities.
Concluding, the Minister commended Kuapa Kokoo for being a shining star, with cooperative principles worthy of emulation.
The Managing Director of Kuapa Kokoo, Mr. Samuel Adimado, commenting on the occasion, stressed on how leadership of the formidable farmer-based organisation has resolved to flush corruption out of the DNA of corrupt officials of the union to maintain the good name it has earned over the years.