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IPPIS: FG adopts GIFMIS for lecturers’ payment, shuns UTAS

21st May 2024

The Federal Government has commenced plans to pay the salaries of lecturers in federal universities, polytechnics and colleges of education via the Government Integrated Financial Management System, popularly known as the GIFMIS.

This was revealed in a letter written by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Didi Watson-Jack, to the National Universities Commission, National Board for Technical Education and National Commission for Colleges of Education.

The move comes after the Federal Executive Council in December 2023 approved the exemption of lecturers in the federal universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and other tertiary institutions of learning from the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System.

The lecturers had suggested the University Transparency and Accountability Solution for their payment instead of the IPPIS.

But by opting for the  GIFMIS, the Federal Government is believed to have shunned UTAS proposed by the lecturers.

The GIFMIS, which is an IT-based system for budget management and accounting, was put in place by the Federal Government to improve public expenditure management processes and enhance greater accountability and transparency across ministries and agencies.

According to Watson-Jack’s March 24,2024, sighted by our correspondent in Abuja on Monday, the new set of guidelines is to purposely guide institutions in financial management following the exit from the IPPIS.

The letter stated, “Institutions are to conduct periodic biometric verification of all its staff. Institutions shall return to the GIFMIS platform for effective and efficient management of financial systems, which is still in use in the institution’s financial operations on overhead, capital and operations cost.

“This requires a prior pre-registration of all employees on the institutions’ payroll on the GIFMIS platform. Relevant schedule officers shall be put in place to manage the GIFMIS system.”

In the new set of guidelines, the Federal Government noted that higher institutions’ Governing Councils and management are to assume full responsibility for policy direction and statutory duties of the institution which include recruitment, promotion, disengagement and discipline of staff.

The Governing Councils are to ensure full compliance with the laws and conditions of service of the institutions and other applicable laws and circulars for effective and efficient governance.

It was also stated expressly that, “no tertiary institution shall employ any category of staff not provided for in its budget for the particular year.”

“All employment must be based on needs of the institution and to be properly advertised, candidates interviewed and the best employed;

“All newly established tertiary institutions must secure approval for their staffing requirements from their respective regulatory body and the Ministry of Education.

“Any temporary recruitment shall be restricted to only senior lecturers and professorial cadre and should not account for more than five per cent in any given year and such appointment shall not last more than one year.

“Councils and administrators to avoid discriminate and disproportionate employment of staff and shall adhere to NUC’s recommendation of academic to 1:5 of non-academics staff ratio.”

The Federal Government further noted that a high degree of probity and transparency is expected in the management of funds of the institutions which would include, “regular auditing and submission of reports to appropriate agencies of government as prescribed by law; and a consequence system would be put in place for the Council and management of any institution that defaults in adherence to these policies, statutory obligations and procedures.”

Sourcepunch

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