DESIGN OF MINISTRY OF CO-OPERATIVES AND POVERTY REDUCTION

MISSION
To alleviate poverty through job creation (thereby reducing .rural-urban
Migration resulting from unemployment and under-employment); provision of infrastructural development and empowerment of vulnerable groups through co-operative micro credit scheme.

RESPONSIBILITIES
Specifically the responsibilities of the Ministry include:
Generation of employment;
Reduction of poverty and rural – urban migration resulting from unemployment and underemployment;
Provision of low interest rate credit to individuals, groups and co – operative societies in the urban and rural communities;
Provision and satisfaction of the loan demands of genuine entrepreneurs in need of funds;
Improve on the quality of life and economic well being of the target group;
Training of the target groups in skills acquisition and entrepreneurship;
Provision of water, roads and electricity in the rural communities;
Encourage communal self – help efforts through Grants – in – Aid; and
Monitor the effective and efficient utilization of and repayment of the
Micro-Credit.
LINKAGES
Poverty has many causes, all of which reinforce one another. Sources of poverty are lack of basic services such as clean water, education, health care, lack of access to land, tools, credit and supportive networks for citizens, lack of income for provision of food, shelter, clothing and political empowerment.
Therefore the Ministry shall work in collaboration with the following:
Federal, State, Development and Donor Agencies namely:
Federal and State Ministries of Agriculture and Water Resources, Health, Education, Science and Technology, Commerce and Industry, Women Affairs and Youth, Abia State Community Poverty Reduction Programme (ABCPRP), Nigeria Agricultural Co – operatives and Rural Development Bank (NACRDB), Niger Delta Development Commission (NNDC), National Directorate of Employment (NDE), National Poverty Eradication Programme (NAPEP), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

STRUCTURE
In order to carry out the responsibilities enumerated above the ministry is structured into seven departments which include three service departments and four professional departments.

SERVICE DEPARTMENTS
I. Administration
II. Finance; and
III. Planning Research and Statistics.

PROFESSIONAL DEPARTMENTS
I. Co – operative
II. Poverty Reduction
III. Rural Infrastructure and
IV. Community Development.
The responsibilities of the department include:
Registration of qualified Cooperative Societies, which empowers them to hold moveable and immoveable property of any description, enter into contracts, institute and defend suit and other legal proceedings, and do all things necessary for the other purpose of its constitution. |
Inspection of the books (cash and records) of registered Co – operative Societies, to ensure that they keep records of their dealings according to the Cooperative Act to ensure probity, transparency and accountability.
Approval of Cooperative Societies annual accounts to confirm the final account of the Cooperative Societies and its Balance Sheet, to determine if the societies are solvent.
Processing and writing of audit comments of Cooperative Societies, to ensure that the activities of the Societies are within the ambit of the law.

DIVISIONS
The Cooperative Department is structured into three divisions;

1. FIELD EXTENSION SERVICES DIVISION;
The division is charged with the following responsibilities;
I. Grouping of the people into Cooperative Societies;
II. Supervising the field officers and Cooperatives Societies;
III. Monitoring and evaluating of Cooperative Societies and
IV. Preparation of the departmental productivity chart.
V.
2. LEGAL, REGISTRATION, ACCOUNT AND AUDIT DIVISION:
This division performs the following responsibilities;
I. Processing of all documents submitted for registration;
II. Landing of and review of arbitrations into disputes in Cooperative Societies;
III. Folding of inquiries into disputes between societies and Cooperatives;
IV. Liquidation of moribund Cooperative Societies;
V. Processing and approving of account of the Cooperative Societies;
VI. Processing and writing audit comments of Cooperative Societies;
VII. Inspecting the books, cash and records of Cooperative Societies;
VIII. Ensuring prompt collection of revenue due to the State Government;
IX. Linking the Cooperative Societies to available Micro – Credit facility; and
X. Reconciliation of revenues from the field.

3. EDUCATION AND MANPOWER DEVELOPMENT DIVISION:
The division is involved in;
I. Training of the Cooperative Societies through Seminars/Workshops;
II. Teaching the Cooperators business projection and planning,
III. Record keeping;
IV. Human capacity building and modern business techniques.
V.
DEPARTMENT OF POVERTY REDUCTION
The main focus of the department is to compliment all poverty alleviation and employment generation initiatives of government by providing necessary financial empowerment through various micro – credit facilities to help create jobs and promote Micro Small and Medium Scale Enterprises. The essence is to engage idle hands productively for economic growth and development of Abia State.
Training of the vulnerable groups (Rural and Urban Poor, Women, School drop outs and school leavers) on skills acquisition and other economic ventures;
Loan management to ensure judicious utilization of fund and timely repayment of same as at when due.
DIVISIONS
The department accommodates three divisions namely,
Loan Management, Credit Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation and Advocacy and Training.

LOAN MANAGEMENT DIVISION:
This division in collaboration with department of finance is responsible for; | Loan application and processing;
Loan disbursement to beneficiaries; and
Loan recovery from beneficiaries after the period of Moratorium

CREDIT PLANNING, MONITORING AND EVALUATION DIVISION:
This division in collaboration with department of Planning Research and Statistics has the following responsibilities:
Credit Planning and Linkages with Micro – Finance Institutions, Agencies and
Government;
Monitoring and evaluation of loans disbursed and performance of the beneficiaries.
ADVOCACY AND TRAINING DIVISION:
The division is involved in:
Advocacy on poverty reduction through the Community Development and
Co-operative Officers, Seven Man Economic Empowerment Committee of the Rural Communities and Town Development Union Leaders, Churches, NGOs, Media houses etc.
Training of the prospective entrepreneurs on identification of business opportunities, harnessing and utilization of necessary resources and to initiate an-n sustain appropriate actions towards actualization of business objectives; and Training prospective entrepreneurs on record keeping, feasibility studies/business plans and skills acquisition.

DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
This department is saddled with the following responsibilities;
I. Community mobilization and sensitization for execution of meaningful/viable self help projects;
II. Generation of baseline data on communities needs;
III. Training of Community Development Projects’ Leaders and Community
Development Assistants in training on Community Development Methods, practices and procedures;
IV. Registration of Town Development Unions/Associations to enable government regulate, coordinate and channel their activities towards community development purposes.
IV. It also aims at generating revenue for government; and
V. Collaboration with community development related Agencies, NGOs, CBOs, etc to link communities to their development packages.

DIVISIONS
For effective service delivery the department is structured into three divisions; ‘
COMMUNITY MOBILIZATION AND ENLIGHTENMENT DIVISION:
This division is involved in:
Community Mobilization and sensitization to educate communities on the need to embark on effective, meaningful and sustainable self – help development projects; and Periodic inspection and reporting of community development self – help projects in the various LGAs of the State to enable government have an idea/make an assessment of the self – help development efforts of the people.

DATA COLLECTION AND PROCESS DIVISION:
This division in collaboration with department of Planning Research and
Statistics is involved in:
I. Generation of baseline data on the basic needs of the people for appropriate intervention;
II. Recommendation of viable self – help projects for Grant – in – Aid / Financial assistances;
III. Registration of town development unions and associations to enable government regulate, co – ordinate and channel their activities towards community development purposes; and .
IV. Also generate revenue for government.

TRAINING AND COMMUNITY RELATIONS DIVISION:
This division is involved in:
I. Training of community development project leaders on result – oriented approach to community development including project identification, monitoring, evaluation, sustainability plan and transparency;
II. Training/induction course for newly – recruited community development officers, in collaboration with Administration Department;
III. Community relations in respect of peace building/conflict management activities; and
IV. Collaboration with Community development relation line Ministries, development partners, NGOs, CBOs, etc, in the State with the objectives of linking communities to them for assessment of their development packages.

DEPARTMENT OF RURAL INFRASTRUCTURE
The-department is saddled with the following responsibilities:
I. Development of rural infrastructure through provision of roads, water and
Electricity;
II. Maintenance and rehabilitation of dilapidated infrastructures (like school block, Markets, pump houses in the rural areas etc. and earth moving equipment.
To achieve the above responsibilities the department is structured into three divisions.

RURAL WATER DIVISION:
This division is involved in:
I. Carrying out geophysical and baseline surveys for drilling of borehole;
II. Construction of stanchion for overhead tanks and fitting of hand pump
boreholes;
III. Maintenance of hand pump boreholes;
IV. Reticulation of pipeline extension; and
V. Water quality analysis.

RURAL ROAD, BUILDING AND TECHNICAL DIVISION:
This division is involved in:
I. Construction, grading and maintenance of rural roads, feeder and farm roads;
II. Construction of dams, (drainages and culverts in the rural areas;
III. Construction and maintenance of buildings in the rural areas; and
Repair and Maintenance of all the earthmoving equipment for road Construction.

RURAL ELECTRICITY DIVISION:
This division is involved in:
I. Construction / Maintenance of high / low tension lines in the rural areas;
II. Building & Maintenance of rural sub stations;
III. Rural Electrical surveys / inspections, Monitoring / evaluation / certification of all rural electrification projects in collaboration with the department of Planning Research and Statistics;
IV. Distribution & servicing of rural homes with electricity; and Procurement and distribution of transformers.
Administration department is a service department responsible for staffing, human resource planning, recruitment, selection and placement of staff, induction and Orientation, training and development, performance appraisal, transfer, promotion and discipline, separation from service; record Keeping/management; procurement/stores management; maintenance of office equipment and building; investigations; and ensures that rules guiding the service is strictly adhered to. The Department accommodates three divisions for improved efficiency viz;

RECORDS MANAGEMENT DIVISION:
This division ensures proper record keeping and management through maintenance of open and secret registry. The registry ensures proper documentation of mails and file movement to appropriate designated departments. It ensures the safety of all files, documents and their timely submissions on request.

HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT DIVISION:
This division is involved in Human resource planning which includes:
Planning for future personnel needs of the Ministry, recruitment, selection, retirement programme and development programme;
Induction and Orientation to help new employees and the Ministry accommodate each other;
Training staff for the acquisition of skills and development of staff to improve technical, human and conceptual skills;
Performance appraisal of staff, for employee incentives and promotions; and maintenance of staff discipline which may involve reprimands demotion, dismissal etc.

COM/ION SERVICES / PROCUREMENT DIVISION:
This division oversees logistics, vehicle maintenance and management;
Takes charge of general maintenance of office equipment building and furniture;
Ensures staff participation in clean up exercises;
Takes charge of investigation and security matters;
Procurement of stationery items, office equipment, vehicles; and inventory control through stores receipt, vouchers and issue vouchers.

DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING, RESEARCH AND STATISTICS
The department of Planning Research and Statistics is one of the service departments of the Ministry, specifically charged with the responsibility of formulation of plans and mapping out strategies for implementation of the Ministry’s Projects and Programmes;
Monitors and evaluates the capital projects; It also conducts surveys and research to determine the areas of intervention in the activities of rural communities, low-income earners and vulnerable group; and The department houses the library and the data bank of the Ministry.
The Department of Planning, Research and Statistics has three main Divisions namely;

PLANNING DIVISION:
This division has two units namely Budget unit and Monitoring and Evaluation
Unit Involved in;
Formulation of plans, programmes and Projects;
Maps out strategies for implementing the programmes and projects;
Monitors and evaluates the various programmes and projects being executed to ensure they meet stated specifications;
Prepares monthly, quarterly, half yearly annual reports, work-plan and other reports as may be needed;
Preparation of annual budget; and
Secretariat to Ministry’s Tenders Board, National Councils on Agriculture and Rural Development, Co-operative and Poverty Reduction, Works and other adhoc committees.

RESEARCH DIVISION:
This division has two units Research:
Library Unit. The division is involved in;
Carrying out market survey for the Ministry’s Programmes and Projects;
Feasibility studies for all the programmes and projects to be implemented;
Researches on the best practices to achieve the Ministry’s goals and objectives;
Carries out research work on the Socio-economic impact of implemented projects on the beneficiaries;
Determine and identity the Need Assessment of the Rural Communities; and Carries out feed back mechanism to ensure efficient application of resources in project implementation.

STATISTICS DIVISION:
This division has three units namely Statistical Survey, Data Analysis and Information Communication Technology Units. It is involved in Collection, collation, analysis and banks statistical data on Cooperative Societies, Community Development activities, infrastructure status, self-help projects and Micro Small and Medium Scale Enterprises of the rural Communities.
Maintenance of the Ministry’s Computers; and Information Communication Technology of the Ministry.

FINANCE DEPARTMENT
Finance Department essentially is charged with the onerous responsibility of financial management and financial re-engineering of the Ministry. It is the powerhouse as well as the pivot upon which the wheels of all other departments revolve. Specifically, the department sees to the payment of staff salaries and allowances; Payment for jobs – executed by other department of the Ministry; and Collaborates with the department of Poverty Reduction on Loans management.
It consists of three (3) divisions namely, Accounts Production division, Capital Expenditure Division and Recurrent Expenditure Division.
ACCOUNT PRODUCTION DIVISION:
This/division has essentially two (2) units namely Internal Audit Unit and Reconciliation Unit.
The division ensures that all accounting records as may be required by authorized government agency are in order; and Renders all returns to appropriate government quarters.
CAPITAL EXPENDITURE DIVISION:
This division has two (2) Units under it namely:
Unit for Accessing Capital vote and Unit for Documentation and Monitoring for Capital Vote.
This division ensures that all Capital Votes approved for the Ministry is accessed; and
Ensures that appropriate documentation is made before payment

RECURRENT EXPENDITURE DIVISION:
This Division comprises four (4) units which include, payroll unit, cash office unit, revenue unit and other charges unit.
The Division ensure that staff emoluments and other entitlement are met through appropriate documentations; and that all receivables in the form of revenue are received, recorded and accounted for.