Dr Christopher Echereobia, the Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Federal University of Technology, Owerri chapter, has said that the union will embark on a nationwide strike should the Federal Government refuse to grant its demands.
Echereobia said this on Wednesday during an interactive session with newsmen in Owerri.
He said that the union did not take delight in going on strike, adding that the well-being of students would always remain important to lecturers.
He frowned at the threat by the Federal Government to withhold salaries of lecturers, who refused to be captured under the Integrated Payroll Personnel Information System (IPPIS).
According to him, the system does not align with international best practices, which granted autonomy to universities and should not be introduced in universities.
Echereobia urged the Federal Government to look into the agreement, which it signed with ASUU in 2009, with a view to fulfilling its part of the agreement.
He said that fulfilling the terms of agreement would help to address the decade-old yearnings of lecturers.
He said: “IPPIS contravenes the laws of the university system because we have a governing council to whom we are directly accountable and who takes charge of issues, including the system remuneration.
“There are some peculiarities in the university, such as the right to sabbatical leave, amongst others, which the IPPIS has not taken care of.
“IPPIS does not agree with international best practices, which allow for university autonomy and it is most embarrassing that the federal government is threatening to withhold salaries of lecturers who have refused to enroll in the system.
“In the event that federal government refuses to keep our agreement as signed in 2009 and failure to hearken to our legitimate yearnings, we will be left with the unpalatable option of embarking on strike. The ball is in their court,” he said.