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Uganda’s Cooperatives Registry Management Information System launched

Mwesigwa Rukari (right) Permanent Secretary Geraldine Ssali, Ivan Asiimwe of UCA at the launch of Cooperatives Registry Management system

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT |  The Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Cooperatives has introduced a digital registration process for credit and savings cooperative societies in the country, a move that has been welcomed by stakeholders.

The Cooperatives Registry Management Information System was launched on Thursday, in Mbarara City.

Mary Amumpaire Mwesigwa the Head of ICT at the Ministry said that the move marks a significant shift from manual registration to the use of electronic registration methods.

She said the new system ensures that cooperative societies have equitable and timely access to services such as mobile money payments, e-certification of documents, and e-reservation of cooperative names noting that the services are now available along the whole service delivery chain, from registration to management of cooperative societies at the Ministry.

While launching the system, Geraldine Ssali, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Trade Industry and Cooperatives said that the development of the system is in line with the National Vision 2040 that stipulates ICT as an enormous opportunity that Uganda can exploit to transform the economy.

She said that the system will strengthen cooperatives by enhancing their capacity in group dynamics, entrepreneurship, and value chain activities, particularly collective marketing.

Alex Asiimwe, the Chairperson of Mbarara Grapes Farmers Cooperative, praised the transition to a digital system noting that the previous practice of travelling to Kampala to file annual returns and make amendments to the Cooperative By-laws was inconvenient for cooperators.

He added that locating files from the records manually was tiresome and times-consuming.

Allan Mbabazi the head of ICT at Rwanyamahembe SACCO said that it was very costly to travel to Kampala for the Cooperatives who would spend more than a million shillings to transact any activity at the ministry.

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However, Claire Kasheija a cooperator asked Ministry officials and Commercial officers to train SACCO officials, and board members of cooperatives and also get them computers and internet gadgets to ease the implementation of the system.

Ivan Asiimwe the Secretary General of Uganda Cooperative Alliance said that the digitalization of registering cooperatives will make it easy for them to revive the Uganda Cooperative Bank to enable Ugandans in cooperatives to save more money to invest in projects to develop themselves.

Uganda has a total of 44,879 cooperatives, including 10,678 SACCOs, 6,880 Emyooga SACCOs, and 13,159 credit and savings, cooperative societies (SACCOs) among others.



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