…we are not affected by IPPIS directive, says ASUU
Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), Ahmed Idris has asked bursars of Federal universities to stop salaries of any staff who failed to enrol for the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information (IPPIS) from November.
President Muhammadu Buhari had in his 2021 budget presentation to the national assembly on Thursday declared that as a way of eliminating fraud from the payment of salaries, only staff on the platform would be paid.
In an immediate reaction, however, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) said Buhari’s directive did not apply to its members as they were not civil servants.
Members of ASUU have been on strike over IPPIS in the last six months.
Also on October 5, members of Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities (SSANU) and Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) commenced a 14-day nationwide strike against IPPIS on Monday, October 5.
All the staff who had not been earlier captured have, therefore, been directed to report in Abuja for enrolment.
The directive was contained in a memo signed by Director of IPPIS in the Office of Accountant General of the Federation (OAFG), Dr Nsikak Ben to vice-chancellors of Federal universities through a committee of vice-chancellors dated October 8, 2020, and titled: STOPPAGE OF SALARIES OF UNIVERSITY STAFF THAT ARE YET TO BE ENROLLED ON IPPIS PLATFORM
“I am directed to inform you that any Staff of your Institution who has not enrolled on the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS), either as a result of Study Leave (with pay), Maternity Leave or on Medical ground, will no longer appear on the IPPIS payroll with effect from November 2020 payroll except such Staff presents himself/herself for the biometric data capture at the office of the Accountant- General of the Federation (OAGF), Abuja with an introduction letter/IPPIS Enrollment forms duly endorsed by the principal authorities of the Institution.
“In addition, all supporting documents should include evidence of six months salary bank statement.
“In view of the above, kindly inform your staff in this category to URGENTLY avail themselves for the biometric data capture at the OAGF.
“However, an exemption may only be given where institutions provide evidence of Study Leave, stating the duration to justify such persons being retained on the payroll.”
However, striking university teachers have claimed that they are not affected by the directive that only federal workers on the IPPIS would be paid salaries.
ASUU President, Prof Biodun Ogunyemi, stated this while reacting to Buhari’s directive on Thursday.
Buhari, while presenting the 2021 budget at a joint session of the National Assembly, said only federal workers captured by the IPPIS would continue to receive salaries.
He ordered all federal workers to enrol in the IPPIS platform, saying the platform was meant to check fraud, including the payment of salaries to non-existent personnel. He said the platform would also check the payment of unauthorised allowances.
While reacting to the President’s directive, Ogunyemi said the workers referred to by the President were civil servants and not university lecturers.
He said, “The directive was meant for civil servants; university academics are not civil servants.
“We have an understanding with the government to develop an alternative platform that would be sensitive to the operations of the university and accommodate its peculiarities.
“The platform we are developing will also respect the autonomy of our universities as obtained globally.
“The idea of seeking clearance from the Head of Service or the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation is alien to university operations because it will halt its flexibility.”
ASUU added that the University Miscellaneous (Provisions) (Amendment) Act (2003), which the government gazetted as University Autonomy Act (2007), had vested the powers of personnel and payroll system in the hands of each university’s governing council.
Ogunyemi said ASUU, on January 9, 2019, reached an understanding with the President to develop its proposed University Transparency and Accountability Solution for testing and adoption for managing personnel information and payroll system in the universities.