Rogue officials blamed for dying SACCOs

Busia assembly Sacco chairman Gabriel Erambo at a past event. (File, Standard)

Mismanagement of Savings and Credit and Cooperative Societies has remained the biggest threat to the survival of the entities in Western region. 

Speaking at a funds drive in aid of buying a bus for the Busia Assembly Sacco, governors Sospeter Ojaamong (Busia), Wilber Otichillo (Vihiga) and Kakamega Deputy Governor Philip Kutima regretted that officials who are entrusted with the management of the saccos end up looting and mismanaging them.

Prof Kutima disclosed that when Governor Wycliffe Oparanya and him came to office in 2013, they formed a task force to find out what was ailing the sugar sub-sector and cooperative societies in the county.

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“The outcome was that societies were dying because of poor management by the officials who are entrusted by members to take care of their contributions,” said Kutima.

“We have to help many societies in Kakamega. Unfortunately, once we give them money they decide to share amongst themselves which is not fair,” he added.

His sentiments were backed by Governor Ojaamong' and Otichillo. Ojaamong challenged the new leadership of the Busia assembly Sacco led by chairman Gabriel Erambo to take care of the member’s contribution.

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“My government is committed to ensuring that we support cooperative societies and that is why we have some millions which we shall distribute to them,” said Ojaamong.

According to the county boss, the objective is to ensure that members of the Sacco benefit and empower themselves.  Mr Erambo’s team is yet to recover at least Sh10m that was unaccounted for by former officials.

SEE ALSO :How social impact members could put Sacco finances at risk

Cooperative Tribunal ruled that those who took the money unlawfully be surcharged. Commissioner for Cooperative Development had also recommended the surcharging of former officials.

The tribunal chaired by Senior Principal Magistrate Beatrice Kimemia gave the Sacco new officials authority to explore avenues, including auctioning property of former officials and loan defaulters, to recover the lost cash.

Erambo confirmed that they had already engaged auctioneers to attach property belonging to those implicated in an audit report.

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SaccoSospeter OjaamongGabriel Erambo