THE Federal Government, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP) might be heading into another showdown following reports that the government has directed the Finance Minister, Zainab Ahmed to pay January salary through Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information (IPPS).
Ahmed Idris, AGF was reported to have sent a letter to the Finance Minister not to pay funds meant for January salaries to tertiary institutions insisting that the payment would be made via IPPS.
ASUU National President, Biodun Ogunyemi said he is not fully aware of the letter from the AGF but if the FG does not pay the members of the Union, there would be a nationwide strike.
“Our Union has a resolution and our resolution was taken last month at the Federal University of Minna last month that we are ready to engage the government on IPPS on an alternative but if government should make bold its threat to stop our members salary on account of IPPS which we have rejected, our members will evoke our earlier resolution that no pay, no work, so it’s as simple as that” Ogunyemi told The ICIR.
Also reacting to the directive, Anthony Ezeibe, the ASUP National President said although the union had enrolled to the IPPS but still has concerns over breach of agreement on the part of the FG.
“Our only concern is if the government will abide by the template as they agreed with the leadership of the Union,” Ezeibe said.
Speaking on the template of payment, Ezeibe said as tertiary institutions, there are differences in their mode of operation.
“The template is about FG to recognize the fact that tertiary institutions are peculiar, in the sense that they operate a different salary scale, they operate on peculiar allowances and different retirement age and also we have some peculiarity in mobility in the sector” he explained.
He told The ICIR that with the directive of the FG, there has been a breach of agreement because they agreed to have a trial period for the adopted template.
“They are jumping some process, there’s supposed to be a trial period but unfortunately with this directive from the FG that trial period has been by-passed so we are now waiting for the January salary” He stated.
However, he noted that there might be the Union might join issues with FG if the January salary does not reflect the template they agreed on because that was the basis of the Union’s initial disagreement to IPPS.
“If the January salaries are paid and they deviate from that template then you know there will be a problem,” Ezeibe threatened.