CRASoN Executives at the Press briefing: R-L: Akande Olayinka, Director of Finance; Muhammed Bello, Chairman, College of Juror; Victor Oyegoke, CEO/President; Victoria Akpan, Director of Administration/Secretary and Idowu Oluremi, Director of Programme
With over 300,000 Cooperative Societies in Nigeria, an asset base of N1trillion and capable of creating over 600,000 jobs/employments, the role of the Cooperative Movement in Nigeria to adding meaningfully to the Nigerian economy cannot be over emphasised, says the President/CEO The Cooperative Rating & Award Society of Nigeria, CRASoN, Victor Oyegoke.
Oyegoke who spoke at the press briefing to unveil programmes for the 2019 National Cooperative Awards, Symposium and exhibition, holding November 16 in Abuja and themed: Strengthening Cooperatives to serve as catalyst for Nigeria’s Socio-Economic Development, stated that the government has not really given the Cooperative movement the needed attention for the growth of the sector.
He noted that since there was no relevant or comprehensive data of Cooperative in Nigeria at the national level there was therefore no comprehensive data to prove the extent to which Cooperative can contribute to the economy and national development.
“CRASoN has therefore come up over the last 3 years to showcase what Cooperative has been doing to help boost the economy, maybe this will make the government see the reason to pay more attention to the movement and bring them into the fold, especially as part of the Federal Executive Council, (FEC)”, Oyegoke added.
According to Oyegoke, CRASoN is promoting a 3-in-1 grand finale event, packaged to drive its vision of redefining Cooperative standard of operations in Nigeria; through the project CoopCOUNT solution portal for data gathering; CoopAWARDS, to help benchmark across the country all Cooperative societies in order to spore even development and the CoopCARE.
He therefore called for the collaboration of government at all levels and the sincerity to generate the political will to emancipate the masses using the Cooperative Business Model instruments to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor in the country while also revealing its plans to release the 2020 Nigeria Cooperative economy by 1st quarter of next year.
For Muhammed Bello, Chairman, College Juror, CRASoN, the major focus of the 2019 awards is to recognise contributions in the cooperative sector, which is expected to be the third sector of the economy coming after the public and private sector.
With over 40 awards to be given in 4 categories and 2 special awards ( Regulators/Institutions; Cooperative Movement Award; Most Outstanding Sector Based Award; Cooperative Choice Award; Cooperative Billion Gang and Effective use of .coop to promote the Cooperative identity, “We will be celebrating Cooperative leadership in Nigeria through these awards. It would showcase Cooperative contributions to the economy, social impact on communities and create the necessary awareness for the Cooperative sub-sector”, Bello said.
The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, Minister of agriculture and rural development, Sabo Nanono, Chairman Senate Committee on Agriculture, Abdullahi Adamu are expected to grace The Nigerian National Cooperative Awards Symposium and Exhibitions, purposely aimed to galvanise the Cooperative sub-sector of the Nigerian economy.