—Begin 2-weeks warning strike
—Ready to present its U3PS to FG
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru, ABUJA
THE Joint Action Committee, JAC, of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, and Non-Academic Staff Union of Allied and Educational Institutions, NASU, have joined other university-based unions to cripple both academic and administrative activities in Nigeria public universities.
The two unions have directed their branches across the country to embark on a two-week warning strike from Monday.
This is as the unions have said that they are ready to present to the federal government its preferred mode of payment, the University Peculiar Personnel & Payroll System, U3PS, which they said will address all the challenges unions are facing in the payment of their salaries.
Recall that the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU had on February 14, commenced a four-week warning strike as a result of the alleged inability of the Federal Government to address their demands.
At the end of the four weeks, the strike was extended to another eight weeks, while the National Association of Academic Technologists had last week commenced on its own two-weeks warning strike.
Arising from their meeting in Abuja, JAC in a memo dated March 25, 2022, addressed to the leadership of the unions’ branches nationwide directed them to ensure total compliance to the directive.
The memo which was signed by SSANU President, Comrade Mohammed Ibrahim, and NASU General Secretary, Prince Peters Adeyemi, was entitled, “Commencement of Two-Week Warning Strike.”
The memo read: “In view of the nonchalant attitude of the government to our demands, this is to direct our members in all universities and inter-university centres throughout the country to commence a two-week strike by midnight of Sunday, 27 March 2022, in the first instance as earlier conveyed to the federal government in our letter.
“Please note that the two-week warning strike should be comprehensive and total as no concession should be given under any guise.
“Your strict compliance and adherence to this directive are mandatory for all branches of NASU and SSANU in the universities and inter-university centres.”
JAC had in a letter addressed to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, who is the Conciliator-in-Chief and dated March 16, 2022, accused the government of insincerity in its implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, and Memorandum of Action, MoA, reached with the government in October 2020 and February 2021 respectively.
The letter, signed by SSANU President, Comrade Ibrahim and the General Secretary of NASU, Prince Adeyemi had given the federal government up till March 27 to address its demands or face an initial two-weeks strike.
The JAC of the two non-teaching staff of SSANU and NASU in the letter titled: “Looming Industrial Action and Notice of Warning Strike”, recalled the contents of the MoU and MoA reached with the federal government on 20th October 2020 and 25th February 2021, respectively and concluded that the federal government has not been sincere with the implementation of the agreements
The unions further recalled the letter to the government on the same subject matter dated March 1, 2022, regretting that nothing came out of it despite the fact that JAC gave a 21-day ultimatum for the grievances of her members to the addressed.
JAC had given two weeks ultimatum to the government to implement the said demands, while it issued ‘red alerts’ to its members, asking them to prepare for a possible showdown with the government.
Meanwhile, the two unions have said that they are ready to present their preferred mode of payment, the University Peculiar Personnel & Payroll System, U3PS, which they said will address all the challenges unions are passing through in the payment of their salaries.
The U3PS according to the SSANU President, Ibrahim is a multitenant system that accommodates the peculiarities in the Nigerian University system.
“The system handles all employees’ financial records in a hassle-free, automated fashion. This includes employees’ salaries, bonuses, deductions, net pay, generation of pay advice and other financial reports using accounting best practices ices.
U3PS seek to essentially automate those micro administrative tasks performed by accountant general office and bursars of federal institutions, thereby giving the office the mental bandwidth to focus on the macro.
“Some of the security features include but are not limited to One-Time Password (OTP) via google authenticator, BVN verification among others,” he explained.