Coops urged to consider value addition

April 13, 2009

, MARAKWET, Kenya, Apr 13- Assistant Minister Linah Jebii Kilimo has asked co-operative societies in the Kerio Valley to engage in value addition projects to effectively compete in a liberalised economy.

Mrs Kilimo said co-operatives have the potential to address poverty in the society and asked the management of such bodies to engage in projects aimed at uplifting the living standards of their members.

“Residents should also join co-operative societies and pool resources together and empower each other financially. Selfish interests will only hold back the development of the area,” she cautioned.

Addressing a group of farmers from Marakwet District in Eldoret town, Mrs Kilimo expressed concern that a number of co-operative societies in the region had collapsed after engaging in projects which could not generate income for them.

She warned that poverty levels will never be reduced in the area unless farmers worked as a team and formed co-operative societies with a view to initiating viable development projects that can uplifting their living standards.

Such partnerships she observed would also help farmers to market their produce as a team and therefore fetch good prices for their crop.

“It is good we face the facts. Unless we form co-operative societies, market our produce together and engage in value addition projects, we are not going to benefit from our agriculture,” she said.

She asked Kenyans to take advantage of the government’s commitment to reviewing policies and laws governing co-operative societies by joining such movements in large numbers.

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