Housing Cooperatives - Uganda
Housing cooperatives in Uganda
The most important and fundamental change that has occurred in the recent past is the adoption of Habitat Agenda which directly relates to co-operatives and the way they operate. The financing of housing for the low income in all countries including Uganda is supposed to be encouraged (paragraph 82 of the Agenda) through removing of obstacles both legal and administrative, and encourage the expansion of savings and credit co-operatives, credit unions, co-operative banks, co-operative insurance enterprises and other non-bank financial institutions in order to establish savings mechanisms in the informal sector, especially for women. This policy change and emphasis on co-operatives as one way of financing housing will affect the co-operatives to see themselves as possible financiers rather than looking outside themselves to finance housing for their members.
Under the principal of adequate shelter for all, Uganda committed itself to increase affordable housing through co-operative housing and partnership with Government and co-operatives to eliminate social barriers to access land especially by women and people with disabilities.
Co-operatives have an important role to play in the country's housing delivery process, particularly for the low income earners, however changes in their management, organization and legal set up need to be reviewed to reflect the currenteconomical and social environment.
Presently, formal co-operatives are going through very fundamental issues which has but pressure the co-operative movement. There are many other players in the market place and no area is restricted and reserved for co-operatives. There is therefore a need for re-education and fresh look at the laws and regulations governing co-operatives to bring them in line with the reality of Uganda society to enable them to play a meaningful role in shelter development. The potential for greater involvement in housing development by the co-operatives is great.