2024 INTERNATIONAL COOPERATIVE DAY: C’RIVER STATE MINISTRY OF SOCIAL WELFARE AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT, COOPERATIVES STAKEHOLDERS MARKS DAY.

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By AMAWU Cletus Albert Amawu.

Cross River State Ministry of Social Welfare and Community Development and Cooperatives Stakeholders mark the 2024 International Cooperative Day in Calabar with the theme: Cooperative Builds A Bette Future For All Rhymes.
Bishop Dr. (Mrs.) Margaret Ene-Ita, the Honourable Commissioner for Social Welfare and Community Development in her keynote address welcome participants, hence, appreciated their commitments to key into His Excellency, Senator Prince Bassey Otu’s administration to revolutionised the agricultural sector with the ‘Project Grow’ initiative through his “people’s first” agenda for food sufficiency, security and export to generate revenue for development.
According to the Commissioner, the 2024 edition which marks the second in the State is unique in many ways.
“This year’s celebration is unique in many ways. It is unique because it is coming few weeks after the celebration of the one year of of HIs Excellency, Senator Prince Bassey Otu, the Governor of Cross River State.
“It is unique as its theme for the year Cooperative Builds A Bette Future For All Rhymes with the Governor’s focus on building a better future for all indigenes and residents in Cross River State.
“It is unique as the Cooperative movement in the state is synchronizing with the People’s First mantra of His Excellency, Senator Prince Bassey Otu. The amiable Governor has placed the people first is all his policies and programs and this is unique.
“The aforementioned uniqueness underscores the uniqueness of Cooperative itself which revolves around people”.
She therefore urge the Stakeholders to take advantage of the Otu’s administration in his efforts to transform not only the agricultural sector but the state as a whole as she salute the Department of Cooperatives for collaborating with the Cooperative Stakeholders Forum in marking the 2024 International Day of the Cooperative to create awareness on cooperatives renaissance to strengthen partnerships.
“Cooperative is about people and the administration of Senator Prince Bassey Otu is about people.
“So, these people-centric institutions are echoing the progressive choruses of the people. The people are marching forward, the people have been marching on since the action Governor, Prince Bassey Otu came on board.
“The Cooperative spirit in the state is a great testimony of many goodies awaiting the people as the People’s Governor, Senator Prince Bassey Otu, steers the ship of transportation to the shores of prosperity.
“Let us keep the Cooperative light alive in the state. May the light continue to shine. May it continue to glow.
“As the rainbow of colours seen here today signals a new dawn for Cooperative revival in the state. It kick-starts a new beginning and we, as a Ministry, will glow with the Cooperative renaissance going on,” she opined.
Governor Otu was bestowed upon an award as the most Cooperative-Friendly Governor.
Speaking earlier, the Director, Department of Cooperatives in the Ministry, Ukandi Emmanuel Ogar, equally welcome the Stakeholders to mark the United Nations (UN) International Day of Cooperative observed on every first Saturday of July each year to mark the numerous contributions of Cooperatives to the economics advancement of humanity, increase awareness on the importance of cooperatives, as well as strengthen and extend partnerships between international movement for businesses and human capital development.
According to Ukandi Ogar, two great things stand out in this years celebration to distinguish it from last years’.
“First, the 2023 International Day of Cooperatives was celebrated in the state when His Excellency, Senator Prince Bassey Otu was just coming in with the People’s First mantra to chart a new course for the economic transformation of the state while the 2024 edition is taking place when the People’s First mandate has taken root with Governor Bassey Otu delivering the dividends of democracy at the people’s doorsteps.
“Secondly, the 2023 edition of the International Day of Cooperatives celebration took place when there was no Commissioner of Social Welfare and Community Development, Bishop Dr. Margaret Ene-Ita.
“The Department of Cooperatives in Cross River State is domiciled in this great Ministry led by a Bishop who has added so much pep and spiritual blessings to the advancement of Cooperatives in the state.”
The Director was thankful to God for making it yet possible to celebrate the second edition with funfair and huge success as he commended the massive participation in the turn out to mark the occasion and prayed for special grace, mercy and blessings from God upon the Stakeholders, Ministry, Government and the State. “Hence, what God can’t do, does not exist.”
He capped the journey of the cooperative movement in Cross River State, thus;
“The Cooperative movement in Cross River State has passed through various stages and turmoil and left the School of Cooperative in Calabar, that was once a reference point in Nigerian to become a ‘shadow of mordor’ that’s abandoned. May I seize this opportunity to appeal to His Excellency to bring back the School and possibly upgrade it to College of Cooperative.
“As this will assist greatly in the Cooperative revival going on in the State. May I also use this medium to request that His Excellency carry Cooperatives and Cooperators along as they are reliable partners in progress and channels for the socio- economics development of the state.
“Indeed, mankind has progressed thus far with Cooperative holding the banner of progress. Cooperative is business and no society or nation in the world can survive without business to advance society and humanity.
“This is why Cooperative takes a centre stage in human development. It helps people to help themselves. It joins people in a Cooperative bond. It unites people for a common goal.
“As you return back to your various destinations, let the light of cooperative revival in the State shine upon you, as  you take advantage in all that you will be engaged in to survive in a crowded and competitive world.
“Let me, at this juncture, observe that it is no co-incidence that we are celebrating the International Day of Cooperatives in Cross River State with the People’s Governor, Prince Bassey Otu on the saddle of leadership with his ‘people’s first’ movement that is yielding results.
“Let me thank you all, once again and God bless you. Long live Cooperatives in the State,” he concluded.
Activities to mark the occasion were numerous as cooperators displayed their produce in gallery, goodwill messages were received across the spectrum and roadwork show to create awareness, forster partnership in the business world.
Highpoint of the occasion were the presentation of awards to the governor, honourable Commissioner and deserving stakeholders in various categories thus:
Cooperative-Friendly Governor, His Excellency, Senator Prince Bassey Otu.
Bishop Dr. (Mrs.) Margaret Ene-Ita- Mother of Cooperatives in Cross River State.
Mr. Simon O. Ewa, Meritorious Service to Cooperative Development in Cross River State. Prince Emmanuel Edem, Meritorious Service to Cooperative Development in Cross River State.
Ukandi Emmanuel U. Ogar, the Most Outstanding Director of Cooperatives.
Cooperatives category: Cross River Cooperative Federation Limited, The Most Outstanding Apex.
N. P. A Staff MPCS Limited, Best Record & Book Keeping Cooperative Society.
Orie -Eka MPCS Limited, Best Humanitarian Cooperative Society in Cross River State.
Artisan Thrift & Credit, Best Cooperative Society in Cross ross River State.
Federal Neuro Psychiatric Hospital MPCS Limited, Well Organized Cooperative Society in Cross River State.
UCTH. Staff MPCS Limited, Most Outstanding Cooperative Society in Cross River State.
MERITORIOUS SERVICES TO COOPERATIVE DEVELOPMENT IN CROSS RIVER STATE:
Mr. Sylvester Asuquo-Outstanding Secretary of the Year. Dr. Mrs. Naomi Ernest, Best Treasurer of the Year. Dr. Kelechi Emedoni, Best President of the Year. Hon. Ms. Agatha Murphy, Cooperative Mobilizer. Mrs. Monica Akung, Chief Augustine Duke (KSM), Mrs. Iquo Itoudo, Asibonganwan Ekpenyong, Enu Columbus and Bassey Okey. Others are, Chief Mrs. Nkese Efio-Ita Effiom, Peter Ntol, Mrs. Edemanwan Cohbam, Julius A. Idoko, Hon. Chief Robert Samuel, and Polycoop.

Amawu Cletus Albert Amawu

I'm a Journalist, Host/Producer of The Verdict, your voice of conscience on FAD FM 93.1, Calabar, Public Affairs Commentator, Social Change Agent.

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