From Okwe Obi, Abuja
House of Representatives has appealed to the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to accept what Federal Government has put on the table, while engagements to address all the issues continue.
ASUU embarked on strike since February over unpaid allowance and other remunerations.
House of Representatives Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, made the appeal, yesterday, in Abuja, after the resumed meeting of the House’s leadership with ASUU. He also noted that the leadership of the House would present its report and recommendations to President Muhammadu Buhari next week.
“The House, in the next one week or so, will put up its report and recommendations, and take to Mr President,” he assured, and expressed hope that the president will accept same and act on it as soon as possible. I am pleading with you. The House is pleading with you. We hope for the best,” he said.
Meanwhile, the House was informed last week by NITDA’s Director Information Technology and Infrastructure Solution, Usman Abdullahi, that the IPPIS, UTAS and the University Peculiar Personnel and Payroll System (U3PS) all failed its integrity tests regarding the university payroll.
The decision of the Federal Government to ensure university lecturers enrol under the IIPIS was one of the contentious issues, as ASUU opted for its self-developed platform, UTAS.
However, Director General of Budget Office of the Federation, Ben Nwabueze, cautioned that the nation will not be able fund the use of multiple payment platforms.
“Acquiring and deploying any application will cost money on a continuous basis, to build infrastructure, you need data centre, you need backups and constant software updating.
“Considering the constrained fiscal space we found ourselves, we are vehemently opposed to multiple apps,” he said.
He informed the speaker that funds for the expected salty review of ASUU members will be captured in the 2023 budget.
Acting Accountant General of the Federation, Sylva Okolieaboh, assured that if ASUU could provide guidance on the areas of universities peculiarities it wanted addressed, the Federal Government would not hesitate to address the concerns.
Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chris Ngige, and Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Folashade Yemi-Esan also offered their readiness, with Ngige confirming that a letter for the approval of the salary rationalisation as demanded by ASUU was before President Buhari.