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ASUU strike: FG withholds 13 months salaries of 129 ATBU, UNIJOS, KASHERE lecturers

…129 ATBU, UNIJOS, KASHERE lecturers affected

The Bauchi Zone of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has claimed the Federal Government has withheld 13 months’ salaries of 129 lecturers of the University of Jos UNIJOS), Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Bauchi and Federal University, Kashere, Gombe State. Recently, ASUU declared its intention to resume its suspended strike following government’s failure to fulfil its promises to public university lecturers.

The Coordinator of the union, Prof Lawal Garba Abubakar, who made the claim at a press conference after a meeting at ASUU secretariat, said 95 UNIJOS lecturers were affected, with ATBU Bauchi 16, and Federal University, Kashere, 18. Abubakar blamed the Minister of Labour and Employment Dr Chris Ngige for the face-off between ASUU and the Federal Government. According to him, the inconsistencies observed by the union in the application of the Integrated Personnel Payment System (IPPS) in salary payment and remittance of third-party deductions have continued across all federal universities.

He said: “Since the introduction of the IPPIS in February 2020, our members have continued to be omitted from t payment of salary on a monthly basis. This is the situation across all the federal universities. “Every month when salary is paid a different set of staff will have their names omitted from the payment for that particular month. “As we speak now, about 95 lecturers from the University of Jos are being owed salary arrears of two to 13 months. It is the same situation in ATBU,16, Bauchi and Federal University, Kashere, 18.” Abubakar accused government of victimizating ASUU members using the IPPIS “as a ploy to force them to enroll, thereby frustrating the implementation of the University Transparency Accoutability Solutions (UTAS) as agreed before the strike was suspended in 2020”.

The union chief added, “The questions that need answers here are: are some individuals conducting findings on the high cost of maintenance and consultancy fees on the IPPIS as against the freely developed and more efficient UTAS that has taken care of the universities’ peculiarities in line with extant laws? Could this be the reason for the foot-dragging by the FG to deploy UTAS in the universities?” The ASUU also claimed most of the Associate Professors supposed to retire at 70 were being forced to retired due to the IPPIS “through the abrupt stoppage of their salaries in violation of the Universities Miscellaneous Act of 2012”.

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