There was pomp, dance, and excitement in Lokichar, Turkana South after the County Executive Committee Member for Trade, Enterprise Development, Cooperative, Gender, and Youth Affairs, Elizabeth Loote launched the new Kiniamarae Greater Turkana South Sacco.
In a cake-cutting ceremony, CECM Loote issued a certificate of registration and a constitution booklet to the management committee of the Sacco.
She said, was grateful to preside over the launch of a 1400-member Sacco, following tireless effort from her Department to have all the many Kiniamarae Women Groups transform into a Sacco. Loote lauded the management and entire local leadership in ensuring the many groups had finally joined forces to form a Sacco.
CECM stated that the launch of Kiniamarae Sacco and seven new others established this year in Lokichar alone, 18 others in Turkana South, and many others across Turkana County, are in line with the Governor’s 8th of the 9th transformative agenda; on promoting trade, enterprise and cooperative development.
She further expressed her optimism that the new Sacco would serve its purpose and help empower its members to self-reliance.
“Just like any other Sacco, Kiniamarae is likened to a community bank that is keen to take care of the interests and needs of its members and the community at large,” said CECM Loote.
The Cooperative CECM informed the members that the government will be disbursing the Cooperative Development Fund of Ksh. 94M to cooperatives once the Board members appropriate the Funds are gazetted. She indicated that the County Assembly had recently vetted and approved the chair to the Board.
Kiniamarae Greater South SACCO is a sub-county cooperative formed by the members from the 70 groups drawn from Lokichar, Katilu, Kaputir, Katilu, Lobokat, Kalapata and Lokori/Kochodin Wards.
The Cooperative’s main goals are saving and offering credits to its members.
The area MCA for Lokichar Ward, who is also the Leader of Minority in the County Assembly of Turkana, Samuel Lomodo, who witnessed the launch of the Sacco said, he is going to lobby to the Budget and Appropriation Committee for allocation of more funds to the Trade and Cooperative Department.
He, however, warned the members of indulging in politics, which hon. Lomodo said, would lead to a ‘death trap’ of the Sacco.
The nominated MCA, Dorcas Epusiye raised a concern over the lack of office for the Cooperative, which according to her, will hinder the normal functioning of the operations of the Sacco.
The opinion leader, Philip Aemun, who attended the event, told the Department to facilitate a benchmarking visit to a well-established Sacco in the Country for the members to learn and share experiences.
Aemun, who also resides in Lokichar, requested the Department to continue supporting the Sacco through mentorship programs. Routine benchmarking and capacity building, he stressed, could help societies to be competitive both nationally and globally.
Lokichar professionals were represented by Michael Kapolon, who emphasized the unity of all Turkana communities as a result of the unity displayed by the Greater South Sacco.
Those present during the launch were Jecinta Angolan (Chair, Kiniamarae Sacco), Dorcas Ejore (Secretary to the Sacco), John Lokoli (Turkana South Sub-county Administrator), Festus Lokucha (Ward Administrator) and Benjamin Logiron (Sub-county Cooperative Officer).