CREATING EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES THROUGH COOPERATIVE MOVEMENT (A CASE STUDY OF OGBARU LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA)
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
For quite sometimes now, the Nigerian nation has been faced with a worsening situation of unemployment. Both in relative and absolute terms, unemployment has been increasing in the country. There are limited rural employment opportunities due to lack of specialized skills, farming has been the main occupation of most of the rural people and because the youth are no longer interested in farming, the rate of unemployment has increased over the years.
In this era of unemployment, cooperatives could become sources of self – reliance for the aged, enterprise for youth and the disabled, as well as providing care for Children cooperatives promoted self help and collectively self – reliance. Conceptually, cooperatives are private members oriented voluntary association that operates on the principles of democracy and market economy (Pur, Gwary, Gaya 2001). Cooperatives are established by like mined persons to pursue mutually beneficial economic interest, provide goods and services to each other and to the general public in cost effective ways, prevent exploration of members through self helped project. Defend and protect the right of people as producers and consumers of goods and services and promote mutual understanding and peaceful co-existence among the people.
Cooperative as business enterprises comprises a number of people who come together to satisfy mutual socio – economic interest by carrying out a business activity this might include agricultural or agro – industrial production cooperatives, trade cooperatives, housing cooperatives or saving and loan cooperatives.
The cooperatives approach to business development can create employment in different ways, such as cooperatives as a common workplace for organized self–employment, cooperatives as wages employers, cooperatives as promotes of independent self–employment. In addition, cooperatives activity produces spill–over effects that create job in other enterprises. It is not claimed that creation and maintenance of cooperative business is the only solution to unemployment. Nevertheless, there is convincing evidence that for many millions of persons cooperatives have meant employment instead of constant threat of dismissals.
According to Bob – Igwe (2005) the cooperatives movements is a system of economic action and business enterprise profit motive and involving, as it’s primary function the distribution of goods and services. In other words, it is a movement of consumer who unite on the basis of mutual interest. In reducing living expenses and benefiting from the ownership and accommodations shared by all.
Despite the many different activities carried out under the legal form of cooperatives, all cooperatives share certain values and principles:- open and voluntary membership. Financial participation by the members, democratic control, autonomy and independence, education, training and information cooperation among cooperatives concern for the community.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The study is aimed at addressing the issue of creating employment opportunities through the cooperative movement, though many literature exist in the area of cooperative movement, none is said to have adequately explored the impact of cooperative movement in creating employment opportunity in Ogbaru local government area of Anambra State. However, faced with evidence of an oppallingly low standard of living which the vast majority of men and women in Nigeria have despite two decades of development. Cooperatives movements, it then becomes pertinent to carryout a study to determine of cooperative movement plays a significant role in creating employment opportunities.
It is on the verge of providing answers to question like: does cooperatives exist in Ogbaru local government? In other wise, cooperative movement is believed to have helped in improving economic activities in Nigeria but the extent to which the cooperative movement has helped in creating employment has not been established, hence this study is carried out to fill up the existing gap in the vast literatures that exist in the area of subject under study.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The main aim of this study is to determine if the cooperative movements create employment opportunities. However, the specific objectives of the study are as follows:
1. To ascertain if the cooperatives do create employment opportunities in the area under study.
2. To identify the type of the employment opportunities created by cooperatives movement in the area under study.
3. To determine the factors militating against the creation of employment opportunities by the cooperatives movement.
4. To proffer possible solution to the identified problems.
1.4 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study is centered on creating employment opportunities through the cooperative movement” with particular reference to Ogbaru local government area in Anambra State. However, the study will explore the concept of cooperative movement, benefits of cooperative, concept of employment, the role of cooperative sector in employment generations etc.
The study tends to test the following hypothesis.
H0: The activities of cooperative movement have no significant relationship with creation of employment opportunities.
HI: The activities of cooperative movement have a significant relationship with creation of employment opportunities.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The research work will be of great relevance to administrative of Local governments as well as leaders of cooperative movement in the sense that this work will help in creating an awareness of employment creative ability of cooperatives through it’s findings. The research work can also serve as a reference source to future researchers who might be interested in a related subject. Above all, the research work has helped in broadening the horizon or knowledge of the researcher with regards to cooperative movements.
1.7 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
The researcher wanted to make this work wider and well detailed but various limiting factors adversely affected the researcher ability to achieve the detailed objectives prominent among these factors are:- Time, finance, respondents, attitude and availability of materials.
TIME: The researcher being a student has a schedule time between the research work and other course work which demand her attention. This problem limited the collecting of data for the work.
FINANCE: Insufficient finance affected the sample size and the geographical areas covered by the researcher in the course of this study.
RESPONDENTS ATTITUDE: The cooperative required from the few respondents were to reasonable extent cordial. But in most cases they seems to be sensitive to issues being stated and this attitude to some extent affected the generalization of data.
AVAILABILITY OF MATERIALS: Dearth of materials in the area under study greatly affected the data collected for this study. Hence, the researcher had to spend huge amount of money to source for materials in the internet.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
COOPERATIVE MOVEMENTS: This is a system of economic action and business enterprise characterized by the absence of the profit motive and involving as it’s primary function, the distribution of goods and services.
EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES: This may be defined as situation in which chances or avenues exist that provides an individual opportunities to participate in Jobs that are carried out towards actualization of organization goals such as in remunerative and non – remunerative jobs.
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