The meeting held between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities ended in a stalemate as both parties refused to shift their grounds on the implementation of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System.
President Muhammadu Buhari had received the ASUU leadership led by Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi at the State House, Abuja.
At the meeting, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha had urged the lecturer’s union to comply with IPPIS in national interest.
Mustapha maintained that his office was already in the process of streamlining all issues of human resources in government.
But the ASUU president reiterated the union’s position that the “IPPIS violates the laws of the federation, violates university statutes, and violates agreements between the Federal Government and ASUU.”
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Ogunyemi also stated that the IPPIS would be a “disruptive intrusion’’.
He therefore urged the government to welcome ASUU’s ongoing innovation of “a robust system of human resource management and compensation, called the University Transparency and Accountability Solution.
Which, according to him, will address peculiarities of universities and end inappropriate recruitments.
Also at the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, appealed to the ASUU to encourage its remaining 40,926 members to comply with the established process by enrolling in the IPPIS.
She said out of the 137,016 academic and non-academic staff members of the universities, 96,090 had been enrolled in the IPPIS.
The minister, who said a desk had been opened in the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation for registration of university staff, assured that the peculiarities of the tertiary institutions would be accommodated.
She said many anomalies were discovered in the university structures that had contributed to the increased cost burden.
Ahmed l including staff working and earning pay in more than one university, contract staff on payroll of the government, tax reductions on PAYEE and multiple employments.
Ahmed said some universities had rushed to recruit more staff before the IPPIS registration commenced, which was then detected.
President Buhari, according to a statement by his spokesman Femi Adesina, said the government would give more attention to improving personnel and infrastructure of universities to produce quality graduates.
He assured that education will, henceforth, be a top priority in development goals of the country.
The president said effective and efficient operations of universities would go a long way in improving the economy, especially with focus on science and technology.
He urged ASUU members to assist the Federal Government in realising the target of improved education and credible certificates by complying with ongoing verification and validation of human resources in the universities, which will guarantee optimum output.
Buhari said constitutional provisions should be carefully studied and adhered to for more harmonious relationships and standards that would promote efficiency.
The President further directed the Ministry of Education to put in more efforts in ensuring that Nigerian universities were properly funded, with adequate infrastructure and staffing.