VCs applaud FG removal of tertiary institutions from IPPIS

"The payment of universities staff through IPPIS has been settled and they are now to use their platform to pay their staff."

VCs applaud, FG removal of tertiary institutions, IPPISThe Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (CVCNU) has applauded the decision of the Federal Government on the removal of universities from the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).
The Secretary-General of the committee, Prof. Yakubu Ochefu, disclosed this to newsmen in Abuja on Thursday.
He spoke on the sideline of a One-Day Workshop for Advancement and Alumni Officers of Nigerian Universities.

The Federal Government has removed tertiary institutions from the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) with immediate effect.

Similarly, the institutions are now to recruit their personnel without recourse to the Office of the Head of Service of the federation in order to reduce bureaucracy involved in such exercises.

The Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, who disclosed this at the end of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on Wednesday in Abuja, said this was part of government efforts to reduce the challenges facing tertiary institutions.

“Today at council, a most important decision was taken concerning the education sector of the economy. The vexatious issue bordering the stakeholders in the sector, including the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), was settled.

“The payment of universities staff through IPPIS has been settled and they are now to use their platform to pay their staff.

“They are now to also recruit their staff through normal criteria. They will, however, continue to be supervised by the Ministry of Education and the National Universities Commission as is the practice,’’ he said.

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The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, also disclosed that the FEC approved the review of waivers by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) in order to address the issue of loss of revenue.

“The Federal Government has approved the review of waiver by the Nigeria Customs Service which has been a thing of concern and loss of scarce revenue. The service has observed that the waiver has affected it targets.’’

He said that necessary recommendations would be made to address the issue of Customs waivers in the country, adding that appropriate measures are expected from such deliberations going forward.

The Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, said that the FEC approved two contracts for the sector, worth over N4.32 billion.

The first contract, he said, was for the purchase of navigation communication and remote access devices for the Port Harcourt International Airport, worth N2.22 billion.

‘’The second contract was for a technical support to maintain the new terminals in four international airports of Lagos, Kano, Abuja and Port Harcourt, worth N4.1 billion. These contracts are made for the comfort of travellers in the country,’’ he said.


Removal of varsities from IPPIS will birth new system 
Ochefu said the removal would birth a new university system.
“Universities in other parts of the world don’t depend on government funding like that, what government gives is a lump sum grant to these universities and universities in addition to those grants will look for resources elsewhere to fund their operations.
” This cannot happen overnight, you don’t wean the baby just like that, there is a transition period.
“So autonomy is in the law establishing university and the role of government is to co-fund universities by giving grants, supporting students to pay their tuition and encouraging endowments, so, this is a global practice,” he said.
The secretary general noted that the committee had an interface with the minister sometime in August on the challenges faced by Nigerian universities.
“When the CVC met with the Minister of Education in August, we told him very clearly that for IPPIS, it cannot exist within our Nigerian Universities systems, because the way their operations are calibrated, IPPIS cannot cope.
“This is because our system is very dynamic. In a system, there may be need to hire one lecturer to teach one course or you may need to hire someone to teach for a session after which you are done with it, so the flexibility is such that is dynamic.
” A lecturer who started lecture at the beginning of the semester may fall ill and may need to hire another to cover for the professor in any part of the semester.
“IPPIS does not accommodate this kind of flexibility that the system requires and that is why we said this thing is antithetical to the way universities are operated,” he said.
“We commend the minister for this feat because being a former vice chancellor, he understands the dynamics of how the system operates.
“You cannot say that you must get approval from the Head of Service before you appoint a cleaner, it doesn’t work that way.
“That has never been the system, so this is a major development for us in the university system and we applaud the minister for being able to convince the Federal Executive Council (FEC) of our cry,” he said.
BRANDPOWER reports that the Federal Government introduced the IPPIS  in 2006 as one of its reform initiatives for the effective storage of personnel records.

The IPPIS initiative was expanded to include all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs)that draw personnel costs from the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) had in the past rejected the reform and been at loggerheads with the federal government over the continuous use of IPPIS for the payment of university lecturers’ entitlements.