The past four years of the Airport Fire and Safety Cooperative Multipurpose Society, AFSCMS has witnessed massive investment on landed properties which will start yielding dividends for members soon.
These investments included the acquisition of 200 plots of land at Lusada, Agbara, abandoned school property at Alakuko, the building of benefitting secretariat and guest house.
Giving his account of stewardship as President of the Cooperative at the 19th Annual General Meeting of Mr. Richard Tella, described his tenure as eventful, impactful and educative, adding that when they were given the mandate to pilot the affairs of the Cooperative, the
focus was put in place a well structured financial administration in line with operational guideline.
In line with their objectives to take the Cooperative to a higher pedestal, they were able to create an investment platform to serve as an alternative source of revenue for the body as well as provide economic empowerment training that had been useful for its members after retirement.
According to Mr. Tella, the discovery of misappropriation of fund perpetrated by four members of the Cooperative propelled the executives under his leadership to come up strategies to sanitize and reposition the operational system with the installation of a software and abolition of physical cash transactions.
Others are the introduction of payments through POS and online, two levels auditing before financial approval and provision of new salary structure and motivation to staff.
He noted that the case involving the members was currently on the verge of being transferred to a high court by the Federal Crime Unit.
“After the internal investigation, they were handed over to the law enforcement agency. We made some recovery from one of them, precisely, out of court settlement-a complete dwelling place and an uncompleted building. Others who have refused to cooperate with the law enforcement agency were summoned to magistrate court”.
On the landed properties acquired, Tella, said 90 members have benefited from the purchase of the Lusada land in Agbara with the purchasing value of N2.5 million.
“We have more than 100 plots left to be sold at prevailing value, which will be higher that the purchase value from next year, the estate, aka Aviation Cooperative Garden, already has government-approved title documents and infrastructural facilities such as tarred roads, drainages and electricity”.
“We have now a new and befitting secretariat which was completed and commissioned this year. It gives us the image of a corporate business entity to be reckoned with in the near future. A section of the office is already occupied by senior citizens Cooperative Society at little price.”
“An abandoned school property was jointly acquired with FMT$A Cooperative Society located at Alakuko, Lagos. The school is registered with the Lagos State Ministry of Education as Aviation Group of Schools, and we are working assiduously to ensure the school takes off earnestly in the next academic session.”
The out gone President of the AFSCMS, emphasized that the guest house built during his tenure would be ready for inauguration next year located at Beesam with 23 rooms for members and other people who wish to make use of it.
He reiterated that there are plans in place to create an Investment Partners Platforms, IPP, where individual members would have the opportunity to buy shares and become investment partners with the Cooperative.
“This will launch the society into robust investment prospect. I believe the coming management team will give it a push and execute the plan.”
Tella stressed that, “the management team rigorously embarked on training of our members from inception with a focus on life after retirement and economic empowerment. Close to 1000 members participated in the training and seminars”.
In the area of passing information to members about ongoing activities and educating them on the rules and regulations guiding the operations of the society, he said it was a herculean task for them and to address this problem it launched the Fire Coop Newsletter which enabled them to reach out to members.
While thanking and commending members for their support and the confidence reposed in him and his management team, urged the members to support and encourage the incoming executives to steer the Cooperative to greater heights.
“A leader without a successor, they say, is not a good leader. I want to assure you that the incoming management team are well tutored and experienced personnel in Cooperative management. I am equally grateful to all Cooperators who had with us endure all challenges, rally round our management team and provide constructive criticism which propelled us to achieve the fit. Let me assure you that you will begin to enjoy the dividend of the investment”.
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