The federal government has issued fresh directive that stops payment of salary to any university employee who is not enrolled on the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) with effect from November 2020.
The government gave the directive in its latest memo from the office of the accountant general of the federation marked OAGF/IPPIS/446/1/159, dated October 8, 2020 and signed by the director, IPPIS, Nsikak Ben, for the accountant general.
The memo was issued to all university vice chancellors through the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigeria, Federal Universities.
“I am directed to inform you that any staff of your institution who has not enrolled on the IPPIS, either as a result of study leave (with pay), maternity leave or on medical ground, will no longer appear on the IPPIS payroll.
“This is with effect from November 2020, except such staff presents himself/herself for the biometric data capture at the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation, Abuja,” the memo reads in part.
The government said such worker would have to appear with an introductory letter/IPPIS enrolment forms duly endorsed by the principal authorities of the institution.
It added that all supporting documents should include evidence of six months’ salary according to bank statements.
“In view of the above, kindly inform your staff in this category to urgently avail themselves for the biometric data capture at the OAGF,” the memo further stated.
It, however, noted that exemption might only be given where institutions provide evidence of study leave.
The government explained that in such an instance, the institution must state the duration to justify why such persons should be retained on the payroll.
Meanwhile, the striking university teachers claimed that they are not affected by President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive that only federal workers on the IPPIS would be paid salaries.
According to NAN, the president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Prof Biodun Ogunyemi, stated this while reacting to Buhari’s directive last 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 enroll 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.
“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.