On 11 June 2020, the plenary sitting of the Senate chaired by the President of the Senate, Rt. Hon. Dr Iyamuremye Augustin adopted to summon the Government's representative for oral presentation on the problems of functioning and management of cooperatives, and outline strategies enabling cooperatives to more contribute to the socio-economic development of their members and the country in general.
The plenary sitting of the Senate decided after the presentation of the oversight report on the management of cooperatives in Rwanda, by the senatorial Committee on Economic Development and Finance.
Hon. Nkusi Juvenal, Chairperson of the Committee on Economic Development and Finance said that the Committee’s activity was to monitor the application of one of the fundamental principles stipulated in Art. 10 of the Constitution that is “building a State committed to promoting social welfare and establishing appropriate mechanisms for equal opportunity to social justice”.
The committee found that the number of Cooperatives has raised from 919 in 2005 to 10,025 in 2019 while a number of their members reaches 5,211,286 which is 67.2% of the whole productive population. It has been also found that Cooperatives have contributed to the development across the country in different domains such as social welfare of their members, local infrastructures and promoting of various national programmes.
Therefore, there is a set of challenges still faced by cooperatives mainly the mismanagement cooperatives' resources and some of them fail to fulfil their main goal which is to participate in the socio-economic development of their members among others.
The oversight activity was carried out in 15 districts across the country where the Committee visited 74 cooperatives with 44,727 members. The Committee members interacted with local government officials and members of Cooperatives on functioning and management of cooperatives and their roles in the social-economic development of their members.