The crisis between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities over the controversial Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System may linger till February 2020.
This is because the Senate leadership had ruled out the possibility of a meeting between the varsity lecturers until after its resumption from the Christmas and New year holidays.
The National Assembly would resume on January 28 and a possible meeting between the Senate and ASUU might not hold earlier than February.
Investigation by our correspondent revealed that the overdue meeting between the leadership of the upper chamber and ASUU, which was supposed to have been held shortly after their first engagement in October, had yet to take place.
The leadership of the Senate had two months ago, met with the ASUU leaders where the lecturers were implored to shelve their ongoing strike over the IPPIS arrangement then pending when the Senate would find an amicable solution to the imbroglio.
The lawmakers promised to engage in top level discussions with the Federal Government and to invite the leaders of ASUU for the final round of the meeting.
However, two months after, the ASUU leadership had alleged that the Senate had yet to fulfil its promise of inviting the varsity lecturers.
The lecturers also said the Federal Government had made good it’s threat to stop salaries of ASUU members who failed to embrace the IPPIS arrangement.
Speaking on the development in an interview with our correspondent on Monday, the Senate Leader, Abdullahi Yahaya, said the meeting would hold when the Senate resume its current Christmas and new year’s holidays.
He attributed the inability of the Senate to convene the meeting as promised, to the tight schedule of members of the upper chamber in the last two months.
He also said that the Senate, at a point, discovered that the ASUU leadership was exploring other platforms, apart from the one initiated by the upper chamber, to prosecute their struggle.
He said, “The ASUU has not initiated any move that they want to meet with us since we have not invited them.
“The Senate has been very busy and members have been working day and night it has not been possible for us to convene another meeting. It just wanted to intervene in order to find a way out of the crisis amicably but it appears as if they (ASUU) have their own platform different from the Senate arrangement where they think they can achieve their aim.
“Maybe when the Senate resumes (after January 28) and they ( ASUU) still want us to talk on the issue, we will intervene, if they dont, we will just appeal to them.”
Source: Punch News