By Elizabeth Uwandu
The Dean, Faculty of Arts, Delta State University, Abraka , Prof. Sunny Awhefeada, has described the move by President Muhammadu Buhari to have all federal government workers including varsity staff have their details on the Integrated Payroll and Personal Information system, IPPIS, as a move to destroy system in the ivory towers.
Recall that the President during the presentation of 2020 budget directed that any employee of the federal government not captured by IPPIS would risk receiving his or her monthly salary.
However, Prof. Awhefeada in a chat with our correspondent, said although, IPPIS was a welcome development to stem corruption in the civil service, it was unrealistic to include lecturers.
According to him: “IPPIS is no doubt a welcome development in tackling the syndrome of ghost workers and the attendant revenue leakage. However, the system must take into consideration the peculiar nature of the university system.
“The university is not a civil service that easily conforms to the cut and paste tendency of Nigeria’s bureaucracy. Universities through the Governing Councils have powers to employ, the universities have such phenomena like sabbatical leave, leave of absence, fellowships and ofcourse the professorial retirement age of 70.
“These factors and others make it unrealistic to bundle the universities into IPPIS. ASUU is not against government’s move to curb financial leakage and corruption. ” Prof. Awhefeada noted.
The Dean, Faculty of Arts, DELSU however lamented the alleged condemnation by the Accountant General of the Federation on the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU over the latter’s refusal to key into IPPIS.
The Arts critic explained that, “The Accountant General of the Federation wasted tax payers money to launch a campaign of calumny against ASUU over the IPPIS. This is unfortunate and it depicts the arrogance and malice of ignorance.
“ASUU is saying that the universities are unique and should not be subjected to ill-conceived and insincere policies evolved by an indolent civil service. The IPPIS is an attempt by government aided by the civil service to destroy the university system. It must be resisted. There must be an alternative to the sham called IPPIS.” He stated.
Meanwhile, the Head of department, Mass Communication, Yaba College of Technology, Yabatech, Dr. Charles Oni, also noted that IPPIS was filled with errors. “The government is always chasing shadows leaving the substance. When pension was made contributory, was it not said that it was to prevent corruption? Were the funds running into billions of Naira not embezzled? The IPPIS is fraught with inherent errors but since enlistment is by fiat, there is no problem. We will keep our fingers crossed and watch where the pendulum swings.”