BY DAYO ADESULU
The Federal Government has said that it has gotten an alternative to the six months old strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.
Dr Chris Ngige, The Minister of Labour and Employment, who addressed viewers during his interview on the Channels Television’s Politics Today aired Tuesday evening.
He said the FG was ready for an integrity test of the University Transparency and Accountability Solution developed as an alternative to IPPIS by the varsity lecturers.
According to him, the Federal Government will consider the UTAS if it addresses the shortcomings identified in IPPIS.
Ngige, therefore posited that if the aforementioned is addressed, the Academic Staff Union of Universities would soon suspend its strike.
In that regard, he said the Ministries of Finance, Education, Labour and Employment and the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation will meet with ASUU to resolve the disagreement on the controversial Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System.
He said, “The issue of ASUU will soon come to an end. Two reasons – ASUU have called the Federal Government, represented by Finance and the Accountant-General Office and their direct employers, the Ministry of Education to come for the test.
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“We are ready to do that. After the independence day celebration, the four ministries and agencies involved will gather together with ASUU. We will look at the UTAS. If there are shortcomings with IPPIS as complained which UTAS have corrected. What’s wrong about it? It is software, we will look at it.
“Secondly, ASUU members have been collecting their money since COVID-19 came and I wrote a memo to Mr president that ASUU members are still Nigerians. Even the members have families that they care for. By upper week, we are going to arrange for this demonstration.”
ASUU had rejected IPPIS, insisting that it violates university autonomy and proposed the UTAS as an alternative. The development led to ASUU strike which kicked off March 23, 2020.