The Federal Government says its demands on members of the Academic Staff Union Of Nigeria (ASUU) to produce their Bank Verification Number (BVN) for the payment of their withheld two months will expose those with multiple jobs
On Wednesday, ASUU members who are currently on an indefinite strike rejected this demand by the Federal Government to produce their BVN before the advancement of their February and March salaries.
The day prior that, President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the payment of the withheld two months salaries of ASUU members who refused to enrol on the Integrated Payment Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
ASUU,In a swift reaction, stated that the Federal Government does not require lecturers’ BVN to pay the two months withheld salaries.
The Federal Government through the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr Sonny Echono said that the affected ASUU members were not asked to enrol in the IPPIS before being paid their February and March salaries.
The Secretary explained that the affected lecturers were only asked to provide their BVN to their vice-chancellors, adding ”truth is finally coming out. Why are they afraid of BVN? Because all payments to a single lecturer through multiple accounts with different universities will be linked and traced through BVN.
“Those working in three, four or five universities and still claiming allowances for excess workload in their parent university will be exposed. This is the crux of the matter. It is about transparency and accountability period. Ask them about moonlighting by their members and draw your own conclusions.”
Prof Olusiji Sowande, ASUU Lagos Zone Coordinator testified that VCs of the concerned federal universities were asked to collect BVN from ASUU members who have not been paid the February and March.
According to him, the salaries of lecturers in federal universities are usually paid without BVN and he wondered why the government is demanding for it, stating that the intention is to gather information about lecturers that rejected the IPPIS.
ASUU University of Lagos chapter in a circular to members said information from some branches indicated that the payment is conditioned upon filling of IPPIS form and submission of BVN.
“Our union’s opposition to the obnoxious and retrogressive IPPIS enrollment for which we have been vindicated still stands. While thanking our members for being resolute and steadfast in the struggle for a better public university system in Nigeria, please, be rest assured that sooner than later all our outstanding salaries would be paid without any encumbrance,” Dr Dele Ashiru, ASUU UNILAG added.
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