Samuel Kyaligonza, the Principal, Kigumba Cooperative College in Kiryandongo district, has advised co-operators from the Bunyoro sub-region to acquire financial literacy training if their cooperatives are to succeed.
Kigumba is one of the pre-eminent Cooperative Colleges in the country.
Kyaligonza made the call on Friday, during the 68th Annual General Meeting (AGM) for Bunyoro Growers Cooperative Union which was held at the cooperative college’s premises.
“Financial literacy is key for you to progress. There are cooperatives that completely spoilt the name of cooperatives due to mismanagement of funds and assets. Many people mismanage cooperatives’ money because they have no financial discipline, but if the co-operators were financially literate, the vice would be overcome,” Kyaligonza said, adding: “We as a college are here to offer you this knowledge.”
He also hailed the management of Bunyoro Growers’ Cooperative Union for keeping it alive despite the many challenges it has faced throughout its history, noting that many cooperatives collapsed during the same time.
“It would have set a wrong precedent to other co-operators if Bunyoro Union had ceased to exist, ” he argued.
Robert Waiswa, who represented the Commissioner for Cooperatives, challenged the co-operators in the region to make use of Kigumba cooperative college to acquire the knowledge necessary to transform their cooperatives for the better.
“The cooperative colleges in the different parts of the country are ready to give a helping hand to co-operators in the country,” he said.
During the same meeting, the members re-elected the outgoing Board back in the office since its term had expired.
This happened after the Masindi District Commercial Officer, Moses Kalyegira, who presided over the elections, advised that following the Cooperatives Act as amended has no term limits for cooperatives’ leaders.
“The term is now four years and there’s no limit to the number of terms one can serve for. Someone can be elected time and again if he has served well,” said Kalyegira.
Consequently, all the outgoing leaders were voted back on grounds that they had all performed well.
The members who were elected on the board include Philemon Bagada Rugaaju as Chairperson, Wilson Byaruhanga as vice Chairperson and Xavier Kamanyi as Treasurer.
The committee members include Henry Byabasaija from Bulisa district, Margaret Kyomuhendo from Masindi district, Simon Balikenda from Bulisa district, Robert Ayebale from Hoima district, and Jimmy Kiwanuka from Kiryandongo district.
On the supervisory committee, Jacob Byemaro from Masindi was elected Chairperson, Nebukadezza Isingoma from Hoima district, and Stuart Kyomuhendo from Kiryandongo district were elected as members.
Kalyegira noted that the vetting committee will be elected in October during the 69th Annual general meeting.
In his remarks, Philemon Bagada Rugaaju who was elected the Union’s Chairperson pledged to serve diligently to take Bunyoro Growers Cooperative Union to greater heights.
“I urge for teamwork in order to achieve this,” Bagada appealed.
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