coopThe leadership of the Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society of National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) has identified new ways of recovering regular loans given to members   in the face of the ongoing migration to the newly-introduced Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) by the Federal Government for all Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

This was part of the resolutions arrived at during a meeting of members of the Cooperative Society held at the Institute’s Head Office in Abuja, where it was agreed that a form will be designed and given to all debtors to fill and submit to their individual banks so that they could help deduct the loan repayments by staffers and remit such deductions to the Cooperative’s account; while the Cooperative will bear the cost of bank charges as a result of the transactions, as long as the IPPIS process lasts.

While delivering the Statement of Account for the Cooperative Society from 2006 till date, the Director, Finance and Accounts, Mr. Godson Ordu, who doubles as the Chairman of the Cooperative Society, gave a brief history of how the Cooperative was conceived in 1999, with the financial assistance of the pioneer Executive Secretary, Mrs. Victoria Agodo, but that the Cooperative did not start immediately due to the poor salary structure then.

According to him, the Cooperative kicked off in September, 2005 with an Interim Caretaker Committee headed by Mr. Ismaila Ahmad as Chairman, he (Ordu) as Financial Secretary, Alhaji Ndama as Secretary, Mrs. Jane Anigala as Treasurer, and Mr. Segun Adegbaju as the Public Relation Officer (PRO).

He said the Cooperative Society conducted elections in April 2006 when he emerged as the Chairman, Mrs. Jane Anigala, Alhaji Ndaman and Mrs. Funke Ndukwe retaining their posts as Treasurer, Financial Secretary and Secretary, respectively, while Mr. Segun Adegbaju was elected into the office of the Welfare Officer and Mrs. Ebiumene Stephen as the Auditor.

Eventually presenting an unaudited statement of account, Mr. Ordu disclosed that the Cooperative started with membership strength of twenty-five (25) at inception but has increased to four hundred and sixty-one (461) presently.

His words: “The Cooperative started with only twenty-five (25) members and the deposit in our bank after the initial deposit of  fifty thousand naira (N50,000.00) with an  interest charge of about two thousand five hundred naira (N2,500.00) so what was left in our account then was forty-seven thousand, five hundred naira only (N47,500); that was how we began this journey and the money was domiciled in Nigerian Agricultural Development Bank at Wuse Zone 6, Abuja; that is how we started.”

He went on to present to members the financial standing of the Cooperative, stating: “The balance sheet as at 31st December, 2013, the total Cooperative fund was one hundred and twenty-six million, six hundred and thirty thousand, thirty nine naira only (N126,630,039.00). Out of this, we have what we call, “General Reserve,” after return on investment. Our general profit on return on investment, for contingency spending, that account is with Heritage Bank; and what we have there is three million, five hundred and ninety eight thousand, nine hundred and sixty-four naira, sixty kobo only (N3,598,964.60).”

Further explaining the Cooperative expenditure from 2008 till date, the DFA said the sum of nine hundred and six thousand, two hundred and seventy-seven naira only (N906,277.00) was kept as Special Reserve Fund, meant for the running of the Cooperative, adding, “The income as at 2008 was two hundred and one thousand, one kobo only (N201,00.01k). There was no dividend sharing in 2009 because of the little interest that year. In 2010, the sum of eight hundred and ninety four thousand, eight hundred and seventy-five naira only (N894,875.00) were shared  as income; then in 2011 the Cooperative also shared one million, four hundred and forty-seven thousand, eighty six naira only (N1,447,086.00) as income. In 2012, the income increased to four million, seven hundred and three thousand, one hundred and twenty eight naira only (N4,703,128.00).

“Then in 2013, the sum of four million seven hundred and fifty two thousand, four hundred and seven naira only (N4,752,467.00) was realised and the total dividend shared to members of staff was eleven million, nine hundred and ninety-eight thousand, five hundred and fifty-seven naira only (N11,998,557.00). As at 2013, total dividend shared out of which we have as reserve mentioned is about two million, five hundred thousand naira only (N2.5m) as bank charges. As at 31st December, 2013, the loans given to members of the Cooperative amounted to one hundred and twenty-one million and six naira only (N121,000,006.00), out of which only twenty-seven million, nine hundred and eighty-three thousand, twenty naira only (N27,983,020.00) have been repaid so far.”

Some other major issues were discussed at the meeting and the resolutions reached were that,

  1. The present executive would be dissolved and fresh elections to be conducted in December.
  2. Raising of the interest rate for loans from 4% to 10% was not approved
  3. It was unanimously agreed that the status quo of 4% to be retained; and
  4. That the EXCO should print and distribute the Statement of Account to all on or before the meeting date for transparency and accountability.

Management staffs present at the meeting were the Director, Administration and Human Resources, Barrister Abayomi Oyelola, mni; Director, Research and Documentation, Prince Bamidele Olusa; Director, Orientation and Cultural Affairs, Mr. Alex Omijie; Head of Legal Unit, Barr. Musa Kakamba; Head of Audit Unit, Mr. Herbert Ogbe, as well as the Head of Procurement, Mr. Uruemu Okorodudu.

Njideka Dimgba

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO, Abuja