The industrial harmony being enjoyed in universities in the country may be disturbed as the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) is poised for a showdown with the federal government over planned imposition of the Integrated Personnel Payroll System (IPPIS) on its members.
The present administration had reportedly directed that any worker not on the IPPIS would no longer receive a salary.
ASUU Chairman, University of Ibadan chapter, Prof. Deji Omole, while speaking with journalists in Ibadan yesterday, said the union was not against accountability but would resist any attempt by the government to violate existing laws and autonomy of the university.
He disclosed that ASUU has offered to help the federal government design the appropriate template that would factor in the peculiarities of university lecturers in the IPPIS but the government seemed bent on using the World Bank-designed exploitative template.
The ASUU boss added that the template designed by a government planned to enslave intellectuals as it did not make provisions for payment of arrears of promotion, study leave allowance, responsibility allowance, among others.
According to him, the federal government template was designed to phase out university lecturers who are above 60 years which was against the new policy where professors retire at 70 years.
Omole lashed out at the Buhari-led government for consistently demonstrating its hatred for public-funded universities by introducing many illegal policies that negatively affected the smooth running of the universities
The ASUU boss noted that the federal government has also failed to honour any policy that would improve the quality of education in Nigeria.
"Forceful imposition of IPPIS on university workers is a violation of the university autonomy act. It is therefore illegal.
"While ASUU is not against the accountability on the part of the university administrators, the government should not be allowed to destroy public universities in its purported claims of fighting corruption.
"Our members should remain focused and committed in our struggles to protect public university education by resisting the forceful imposition of IPPIS on university workers," he said.