The Speaker, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and other members of the Body of Principal Officers in the House of Representatives will on Wednesday meet with the striking university lecturers under the aegis of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) with a view to finding ways of resolving the six-month-old strike.
Hon. Gbajabiamila who disclosed this during plenary on Tuesday, asked the Chairman of the House Committee on Tertiary Education, his deputy and members of the committee to be in attendance.
The Speaker said: “This is for the leadership and the Chairman and Deputy Chairman, Committee on Tertiary Education, and any member of that committee that wants to be in attendance: there will be a meeting with ASUU in my office tomorrow at 1:30 pm.”
He also directed the Committee to communicate the meeting to all stakeholders, including Federal Ministries of Education, Finance as well as Labour and Employment.
During his budget presentation before a joint session of the National Assembly, President Muhammadu Buhari had said that any government worker not captured in the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System will no longer be paid a monthly salary.
In response to the President’s position, the ASUU President, Prof ‘Biodun Ogunyemi insisted that its members will not enrol in the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).
The Union explained that it has come up with a home-grown alternative payment platform for university lecturers called University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS).
Recall that the Senate had during a meeting held on Monday with ASUU, invited the Accountant-General of the Federation, Mr Ahmed Idris; Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed; Minister of Labour, Employment and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige; Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu; Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed and representative of the organised labour to the meeting.
The Senate who expressed regrets over the lingering crisis, however, called on both the Federal Government and the Union to shift ground on the issue of payment of lecturers salaries via IPPIS as well as other outstanding issues.