By Martha Agas
Gov Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau, has restated his administration’s commitment to initiating poverty alleviation schemes, to cushion the economic hardships being experienced by the people.
Mutfwang made the promise on Thursday, when the governing council of the Plateau State University (PLASU), Bokkos, paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House in Jos.
The delegation, which comprised of the management of the school, was led by the Pro-Chancellor, Monsignor Prof. Francis Ike.
Mutfwang, however, noted that the state would require wealth creation schemes to curb the harsh economic realities on the people because of the huge liabilities it inherited from the previous administration.
“The focus of this administration is on wealth creation in order to lift our people out of poverty, because as long as we do not find ways and means of increasing the capacity of government to generate revenue, all requests you have made will not be met.
“But we are putting plans in place to ensure we expand the Plateau economy. It is the only way that we can be able to increase government revenue to service the social sector, ‘’ he said.
The governor said that the success of the wealth creation schemes would ensure more funding for the improvement and development of the education sector.
He commended the governing council over the establishment of a business school which would generate revenue for the institution and augment government funding.
He assured the delegation of his administration’s support towards achieving the feat, saying; “ PLASU cannot remain a baby university, it has to generate revenue, so we will try and ensure it happens,’’ Mutfwang said.
According to him, his administration is determined to ensure that PLASU competes with its counterparts both within and outside Nigeria, as he will continue to advocate for the development of the school in his engagements with top government functionaries and diplomats.
He said towards this end, he recently held talks with the Bulgarian Ambassador to Nigeria, Yanko Yordanov, where he sought for training opportunities for PLASU with Bulgarian institutions.
The governor, who described human capital development as one of the greatest assets of Plateau, stressed that he was determined to ensure the state’s higher institutions, including PLASU, were adequately equipped to train its pool of manpower.
He said his administration would also ensure the school was secured to provide a conducive environment for both teaching and learning.
On the efforts to resolve the current industrial dispute with workers in the state, Mutfwang reiterated that the welfare of workers was critical to productivity, and promised that within the month, the state government would ensure workers resumed their duties.
Earlier in his remarks, Ike said the visit was to congratulate the governor on his electoral victory, as well as update him on the state of the school.
The Pro-Chancellor said the school was in dire need of financial intervention to pay its workers, who were still not strike, salaries, adding that the state government was owing the institution five months subvention.
He said that the university, which required at least N27 million monthly to run, had 13 new programmes which were billed to be accredited by the National Universities’ Commission in the next few months.
“We need N300 million to make sure accreditation processes are met,’’ Ike told the governor.