The Federal Government of Nigeria is set to go all the way with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) as the government has reportedly decided to pay the monthly salary of the union through the controversial Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
Recall that ASUU and the Federal Government have been on a serious back and forth over the payment system. ASUU insisted that its members would not be a party to such a system because it will jeopardise the autonomy of the Universities.
The excuse of the union could not stop the Federal Government from insisting that any worker under its payroll must enrol for the IPPIS or risk forfeiting his/her salary. This firm declaration made some members of ASUU betrayed the stands of the union by going behind to enrol for the payment system.
According to TheCable, the accountant-general of the federation has asked the finance minister not to release funds meant for January salaries to tertiary institutions via a letter, saying payments would be made through the IPPIS platform.
The letter says: “l am directed to inform you that the preparation of January 2020 salary payroll and Warrants of the Federal Tertiary institutions are ongoing and will be ready for submission on or before 29th of January, 2020.
“This is to give effect to the directive of the Federal Government that all Ministries, Departments and Agencies drawing Personnel Cost from the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) should be enrolled on the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
“In order to actualize this directive, you are please requested not to release the funds for payment of salaries to the Tertiary Institutions as their salaries will henceforth be paid on the IPPIS Platform with effect from January 2020.”
As at the time of publishing this report, the leadership of ASUU that held a closed-door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari three weeks ago over this same issue has not made any public reaction to this development. University undergraduates across the country are already gearing up for the worst (strike) if the content on the leaked letter stands.