The Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU) has presented a new payroll system for its members to the leadership of the Senate.
The new system called University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) has been recommended by the union to replace the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) being used for federal government workers.
The chairman of the union, Biodun Ogunyemi, made this known to journalists after an over three-hour closed-door meeting with the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, on Monday.
He said the union stands by the implementation of UTAS as it is a home-grown platform developed by ASUU, which he said is better than the IPPIS.
He said it should be used by the federal government to effect transparency and accountability in the process of payments of lecturers’ emoluments.
“What we have started is to open the issues, we will still meet again to continue from where we stopped.
“We have developed what we call University Transparency and Accountability Solution. We have presented it to the Senate today and the Senate President commended it.
“We have shown that we are inventors, we are creators of software and we are also capable of doing what our colleagues are doing in other parts of the world.”
This comes days after President Muhammadu Buhari, in his presentation of the 2021 budget proposals to the National Assembly, said only federal workers enrolled on the IPPIS will be paid salaries.
The government has also written university managements to prepare to stop lecturers salaries from November if they do not call off their strike and enrol on IPPIS.
On Monday, Mr Ogunyemi said the visit was a follow up to the meeting between ASUU and the Senate in 2019 to find a way out of the IPPIS crisis.
The union had agreed to develop UTAS for testing and adoption for managing personnel information and payroll system in the universities.
Lawan calls for common ground
Meanwhile, Mr Lawan admonished the union and the executive to find a common ground and reach an agreement that will end the ongoing strike.
This is even as he blamed both parties for signing agreements that are almost unrealistic.
“When we sign agreements we must do so with the full intention of implementing them. When we negotiate, we must negotiate in such a manner that the final product will be implementable.
“We really don’t need this kind of situation where our universities are shut. Our children are the main victims of this. Therefore, both government and ASUU have to find a common ground for our universities to open and offer the kind of services expected of our universities.
“We cannot afford as a country to continue to have this kind of crisis. This may explain why those that can afford will normally go out of the country even to West African countries like Ghana to receive university education.”
The idea, he said, is to find out how to resolve the outstanding issues – which is supposed to be give and take.
“Government cannot have all its way and I believe ASUU should not expect to get everything it has asked for.
“ASUU must be ready to shift ground. It is supposed to be a give-and-take. ASUU cannot get everything it is demanding from the government.
“We have to tell ourselves the truth, no matter how bitter it sounds,” he said.
The lawmaker further said some of the agreements signed between ASUU and the executive will be reviewed.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...