Sunday, April 2, 2023

ASUU rejects BVN condition for salary payment

Varsity teachers under the aegies of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU)  have rejected the submission of Bank Verification Numbers (BVN) as part of conditions for the payment of their February and March salaries.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday ordered the payment of withheld salaries to the striking ASUU members on compassionate ground, according to Labour and Employment Minister, Dr. Chris Ngige.

Dr. Ngige said the lecturers will be paid once vice chancellors update the BVN of lecturers in their institutions.

The February and March salaries of the varsity teachers were being withheld for failing to enroll for the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).

They began an indefinite strike on March 23 to protest the imposition of the IPPIS on the varsity system and the failure of the Federal Government address outstanding issues raised in the FGN-ASUU 2019 Memorandum of Action.

ASUU rejected the application of force on its members to join the IPPIS, in spite of its offer of a more credible alternative to IPPIS.

But, ASUU said yesterday it has rejected the submission of BVN as a condition for the payment of the withheld salaries.

Its National President, Prof Biodun Ogunyemi, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that the condition did not go down with his members.

According to Ogunyemi, ASUU had been told that the Federal Government has approved the payment of the withheld salaries to its members.

He said: “We appreciate Mr President for doing that. However, withholding February and March salaries was unnecessary in the first place.

“In the second place, the issue is the condition attached to it, which does not go down well with our members, which is the supply of their BVN. Our members are being paid in the past without asking for their BVN.

“So, we have reasons to suspect that this is an indirect way to get us back to IPPIS, which our members rejected. These are things we are going to clarify with the government whenever we are called for a meeting.”

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