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No Salary, No Resumption – ASUU Gives FG Condition To Call Off Strike

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has threatened to continue the current strike action until any time the federal government meets the demands by the union.

This position was reiterated on Monday by the Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Calabar Zone, Dr. Aniekan Brown while giving an update to newsmen on the face-off between the lecturers and the government.

According to Brown, apart from other demands tabled before the federal government, ASUU will also not agree to the deployment of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) in Universities, adding that the union has already recommended an alternative – University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), which he maintained suits the peculiarities of the university environment.

Naija News understands that apart from the payment platform, other demands by ASUU include the setting up of visitation panels to universities, the release of accrued revitalization funds for tertiary institutions among others.

The ASUU zonal coordinator declared that the members are not going back on their requests and won’t return to the classes until the government meets their demands.

In his words: “Our Union has been rejecting this IPPIS since 2013 and the government challenged us to provide an alternative which the union did name UTAS, University Transparency Accountability Solution.

“Because of how IPPIS is operated and because it does not match the peculiarities of Nigerian universities and because the backend and the front end does not really interface, Calabar Zone, insists that IPPIS is a cesspool of corruption.

“It is only attending to issues of payroll and has no control over personnel information, that alone is enough to reduce that platform and make it susceptible to various manipulations and corruption.”

Speaking further, the zonal coordinator maintained that apart from not been suitable for the university environment, the IPPIS platform also poses a national security risk as the server is hosted outside the country.

“IPPIS is not tamper-proof as presented, it has national security risk being that the server is hosted from outside the country by an American company.”

“We consider the IPPIS which is a payment system offered by the federal government as uncongenial with the modus operandi of the university system, given the peculiarities of universities. Government has made it a front-burner, but we consider it a distraction.”

“We are still in the trenches. And we will not return to the classes with an empty stomach. We seek the cooperation and understanding of the good people of Nigeria, and the general public on ASUU’s stance on the afore-stated outstanding issues and the IPPIS.

“ASUU has courted for itself an enviable pedigree of integrity, credibility, and accountability. Our members would not return to the classes with empty stomachs,” he declared.

While appealing for patience and understanding on the part of parents and students, ASUU also called out the government over the alleged claim that over 50,000 members of ASUU have joined the IPPIS platform voluntarily.

Dr. Brown noted that the membership strength of ASUU is not even up to 50,000.

“That is just a divisive and blackmail tactics. We don’t have such a number of academic staff members in the country even if you put together both federal and states universities. Maybe they are counting other unions’ members within the university, but we are certainly not up to the figures they are brandishing,” he noted.

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