SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
The House Committee on Cooperatives Development chaired by Rep. Sabiniano Canama (Party-list COOP NATCCO) approved House Bill No. (HB) 5422, seeking to declare the month of October every year as National Cooperative Month to raise the consciousness of Filipinos on the principles and values of cooperatives and encourage them to join the cooperative movement.
In a hearing last Tuesday, the committee approved the bill which mandates the Chairperson of the Cooperatives Development Authority (CDA), in cooperation with the cooperatives development councils, national and local federations and unions of cooperatives, and other government agencies, to conduct activities and programs that promote the values and principles of cooperatives and encourage participation in the cooperative movement.
Canama, the author of HB 5422, said that his bill is in line with Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s Proclamation No. 903, Series of 2003, titled “Declaring the Month of October 2004 and the Year Thereafter as Cooperative Month,” meant to encourage the wider participation of all sectors of society in nation-building through cooperativism. He added that cooperatives are significant contributors to the country’s economy. “They contribute to economic growth through the mobilization of savings and by providing capital. They also provide goods and services to the less privileged members of society,” Canama said.
This year, he said the cooperative movement in the Philippines is celebrating its 104th year anniversary. As of 2018, there are 26,000 cooperatives registered with the CDA, with about 11 million members. Moreover, cooperatives have generated more than 580,800 jobs and produced goods and services worth billions of pesos, he said.
As explained by Canama, a cooperative is an autonomous and duly-registered association of persons with a common bond of interest, which has the noble objective of helping improve the quality of life of its members. “Cooperatives provide assistance, trainings and services to augment the income of their members, increase their savings, and widen their investments, productivity and purchasing power. Cooperatives also teach their members by propagating cooperative practices and introducing new ideas in business and management,” Canama said.