The Plateau State Government has applauded the Federal Government for approving the establishment of two private universities in the state.
The Commisioner for Information and Communication, Dan Manjang, gave the commendation at the end of the State Executive Council meeting in Jos.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Federal Executive Council on Wednesday approved a memo from the Ministry of Education for the establishment of 20 new private universities across the country.
Plateau State received approval for Karl-Kumm University, Vom; and Anan University, Kwall.
Manjang said the approval by the FEC was a demonstration of a good working relationship between Plateau State and the Federal Government.
He said an approval was also recently received for the establishment of a Federal Polytechnic in Shendam Local Government Area.
Speaking on the bill to establish a Contributory Pension Scheme for employees in the public sector, the Commissioner said the executive gave approval for a bill to be sent to the Plateau State House of Assembly.
Manjang said: “This bill seeks to repeal Edict No. 90 of 1978, and Edict No. 27 of 1998.
“The bill seeks to establish a contributory pension scheme for the public service in the state.
“The bill, when passed, will ensure uniform set of rules, regulations and standard, as prescribed by the bureau for ministration and payment of retirement benefits in the public service of the state and Local Government.
“It will also regulate, supervise and ensure administration of pension matter in accordance to pension reforms.
“The scheme is to inculcate the spirit of savings in civil servants and help them have some thing to fall back on during retirement.”
Manjang also said four sub-councils established by the state government were presented with a template for revenue generation, to be adopted by Ministries, Department and Agencies in the state, as part of efforts to boost Internally Generated Revenue.
Also, giving further explanation on the pension scheme, the Head of Civil Service in Plateau State, Izam Azi, said the bill, which was long overdue, will address the sufferings of retirees who waited for a long time to get their retirement benefits under its current retirement scheme.
“The present scheme, called the defined benefits pension scheme, is solely dependent on budgetary provisions for funding, which has proved to be unsustainable,” he said.
Azi said some categories of civil servants would be exempted from the scheme.
They will be those who have five years or less to retire from the service.
On COVID-19 in the state, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Nimkong Lar, said the state has so far tested 56,176 persons with 8,068 confirmed cases.
He said 7,541 patients had been discharged, while 55 deaths had been recorded so far.
Lar urged residents to comply with the COVID-19 protocols as an executive order has been signed in the state approving the arrest and prosecution of defaulters.