The Vice Chancellor of Plateau State University, Bokkos, Professor Bernard Matur has reaffirmed his commitment to constructive dialogue and collaboration with staff of the university in order to foster a conducive working environment that would stimulate growth and development.
Professor Matur stated this during a press briefing to address the concerns raised by academic staff who initiated an indefinite strike the previous day to address outstanding allowances. He assured that ongoing negotiations, commenced prior to the strike, would be diligently pursued until all issues are amicably resolved.
Professor Matur highlighted notable achievements within his five-month tenure, to include the expansion of faculties from four to ten, payment of eight months’ salary arrears, clearance of outstanding academic allowances, settlement of two years of promotion allowances, and substantial infrastructural improvements. He said Security enhancements were made featuring the establishment of an 18-man police outpost and a 12-man detachment of military task force, along with the recruitment of private and volunteer security personnel to beef up security on the Campus. Professor Matur emphasized collaborative efforts made by the University with law enforcement agencies to ensure maximum security on campus.
Reflecting on the university's history since its establishment in 2005, Professor Matur shared insights into his assumption of the role as the 5th Vice Chancellor in March 2023.He said, “Under the current administration, new programs have been initiated, which includes the Faculty of Law, Faculty of Agriculture, Environmental Sciences, and Health Sciences. Notably, the National Universities Commission recently granted approval for an additional faculty – the Faculty of Education in addition to the take-off of the School of Postgraduate Studies.
Within the NUC approvals, three new programs are set to launch in the Faculty of Sciences, in the departments of Zoology, Plant Science, and Biotechnology. These expansions according to Professor Matur are strategically designed to fulfil the admission requirements of both NUC and JAMB, while also addressing the needs of the host communities.
While acknowledging the support of Governor Caleb Mutfwang, Professor Matur noted that the administration of Governor Caleb Mutfwang has given the university every support including resources to get full accreditation for its programs and also to succeed with its resource verifications. He said the Governor has also ensured the payment of eight months’ backlog of salary arrears owed to the university lecturers during a period of their strike action prior to this administration. He has equally ensured the payment of eleven sessions of earned academic allowances owed the lecturers.
Other allowances previously owed but cleared are promotion allowances for workers promoted in the last two years while security of the university has also received a boost.
He said under this administration, the University recruited 40 security personnel to add up to the existing 89 eigty nine. This is also addition to the presence of 21 professional hunters to ensure that there is total security on campus.”
The Vice Chancellor urged students to continue with their academic activities and registration for the new sessions, assuring them of ongoing negotiations with striking lecturers and expressing optimism for a swift resolution of their concerns to facilitate smooth resumption of academic activities.
Professor Matur expressed gratitude for the support he has received since taking over and reiterated the university's commitment to providing quality education and maintaining a secure and conducive learning environment.
John K. Agam
Public Relations Officer.