Identification and Solution of Management Problems of Farmers Multi-purpose Cooperative Societies
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The general objectives of this study is to scientifically and critically highlight managerial problems which affects the efficient functions of farmers cooperative society.
Specifically, it has been designed to:-
- Determine the socio-economic characteristics of members of the co-operative societies in Onitsha north L.G.A
- Identify the type of activities carried out by the co-operatives in Onitsha north L.G.A.
- Examine the contributions of co-operatives to agricultural development in Onitsha north L.G.A
- Identify the constraints that hinders the contribution of co-operatives to agricultural development in Onitsha north L.G.A
- Make recommendation on the findings.
The literature review for this research will be carried out under the following sub-topics:-
- Concepts of Co-operatives
- Nature of agricultural co-operatives
- The roles of farmer’s co-operative society to agricultural development
- Challenges facing agricultural co-operative societies in Nigeria agricultural development efforts
- Overcoming challenges facing agricultural co-operative societies.
THE CONCEPT OF CO-OPERATIVES
The word “co-operative” is commonly used when referring to actions or situations involving mutual effort, joint action or common goals. Co-operatives are referred to variously as Isusu in Igbo, Esusu or Ajo in Yoruba and Adashi in Hausa (Ogunnaike and Ogbari, 2007). Onyima and Okoro (2009) observed that the word “co-operatives” can be applied to many different types of group activities; however, in the study of Co-operative Economics, the term is used to reference a formal business model which has a relatively recent origin. The term “co-operative” was first coined in the early 19th century and has evolved as an economic and organizational form since then (Aref, 2011). As an association, it tend to achieve the social interest of it members while as an organization, it aims to improve the economic well being of it members. Nwankwo (2007) noted that as an enterprise, co-operatives are active in markets locally, nationally and worldwide. Thus, the co-operative is a socio-economic group. The cooperative system is one through which the majority of the less privileged people in the world can part with misery, depression and oppression by joining the path for self realization and restriction or any social, political, racial or religious discriminations to all persons who make use of its services and are willing to accept the responsibility of membership (Mayopux, 2008).
This study research is to a large extent descriptive research and the design adopted is survey design. It has been designed to enable the use of questionnaires to gather information which was the main instrument for data collection.
AREA OF STUDY
The study area is restricted to Onitsha north Local Government of Anambra State. Onitsha north- North LGA is one of the twenty one (21) LGAs, which make up Anambra State. Onitsha north-North LGA is bounded by Onitsha north-South, Njikoka, and Oji-River LGA of Enugu State. The local government area has a total area of 320 sq km with an estimated population of 112,192 persons (NPC, 2006).
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS
In this chapter, the result of the respondent are presented and discussed.
Socio-Economic Characteristics Of The Respondent.
The socio-economic characteristics of respondents are presented in Table 2. The socio-economic variables considered for the study are: gender, age, marital status, family size, education status, farm size, farm income, years of membership and primary occupation.
The male constitute about 55 percent of the population while the remaining 45 percent are female. The high percentage of female members is due to the fact that co-operative membership is free from gender consideration. Age of the respondents showed that the majority of the co-operative members (77%) belongs to the age bracket of 25 – 50 years, the rest are either above 50 years (19%) or below 25 years (4%). The marital status of the respondent showed that about 68 percent of them are married, 14 percent are single and the remaining 18 percent are divorced. Household size of most respondents ranged from 1 – 4 (57%), followed by 5 – 10 persons (38%) and 5% above 10 persons.
SUMMARY OF FINDING, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
In this chapter, the results of the findings are summarized and recommendations were made on the research.
SUMMARY OF FINDINGS
The findings of the study showed that agricultural co-operatives in Onitsha north L.G.A. are involved in both livestock and crop enterprises, group processing and supply of farm inputs. The society also enables it members to access credit facilities, farm implements, storage facilities and participate fundamentally in the marketing of member’s farm products. They encourage capital formation in the rural community by mobilizing savings which then form the capital needed for carrying out agricultural activities. The study further revealed that high rate of loan default, inadequate infrastructural facilities and lack of co-operative and technical education are among the constraints that hinders the performances of the co-operatives.
The co-operative is no doubt a vehicle of agricultural development, this is due to the effect of it activities which ensures that both human and material resource are efficiently mobilized, granting the small-scale farmers who carry out the bulk of the nations agricultural activities opportunities to expand and diversify their product which will bring about food security to the ever-increasing population. The poor financial state of the co-operative societies which is caused by inadequate capital formation, mis-appropriation of fund and high rate of loan default will however restrict the performance of the co-operative towards efficiency. There is no disputing the fact that agricultural co-operatives if well managed, supported by government and development agencies, are well position to enhance agricultural development.
- Abdulquadri A.F and Mohammed B.T (2011) “The Roles of Agricultural Co-operatives in Agricultural Mechanization in Nigeria”. Continental J. Agricultural Economics 5 (2): 17 – 20, 2011 Retrieved from http://www.wiloludjournal.com.
- Adebayo, O.O and Adeola, R.G (2008): Source and uses of Agricultural credit by small scale farmers in Surulere LGA of Oyo State. Journal of Anthropology Vol. (10) Pp 313.
- Agbo, F.U. (2006) “ Access of cooperative societies to the services of cooperative development agencies in Nigeria”. Unpublished PhD thesis, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
- Agbo, F.U. (2009) “Farmers Perception of Co-operative Society in Enugu State, Nigeria”. Agro-Science Journal of Tropical Agriculture, Food, Environment and Extension. Vol. 8 No. 3 (2009) pp. 169- 174
- Alufohai G.O. and Ilavbarhe, K.O. (2000) “Women cooperative societies and access to productive resources in three local government areas of Edo State, Nigeria” Journal of Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries.Vols. 1&2:. 46-50.
- Arua, E.O. (2004) “Comparative cooperative Systems”. Unpublished departmental mimeograph. Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
- Ebonyi, V. and Jimoh, O. B. (2002) “Co-operative Movement; A way out of poverty”. Longman Publishers- Lagos.
- Emejulu, G. and Constance, I. O. (2011) “Achieving Managerial Effectiveness in Agricultural and Co-operative Lending Through Public Private Partnership” in Managing Public Private Partnership For Africa’s Prosperity. Rex Charles and Patrick Limited – Nimo.
- Eze (2003) “Fundamentals of Agriculture” Clearent Publishers, Owerri – Imo State.
- FAO. (2011): Agricultural mechanization in Africa: Time for Action. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Retrieved from http://www.unido.org/fileadmin/usermedia/publications/pubfree/agriculturalmechanizationinAfrica. Pdf. 20/08/2011.