FG Begins 40% Deduction From IGR of Nigerian Universities, ASUU, VCs Lament

FG Begins 40% Deduction From IGR of Nigerian Universities, ASUU, VCs Lament

  • The federal government of Nigeria might be in for another round of disagreement with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU)
  • This comes after the government disclosed that it had commenced the implementation of deducting 40 per cent from the revenue of federal universities
  • ASUU and the Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities have condemned this move

Legit.ng journalist Segun Adeyemi has over 9 years of experience covering political events, civil society, courts, and metro

FCT, Abuja - The federal government has initiated a new policy that enforces a 40% deduction from the internally generated revenue (IGR) of federal universities and other public institutions that receive partial funding from the government.

As reported by the Guardian, this policy was outlined in a financial circular with reference number FMFBNP/OTHERS/IGR/CRF/12/2021, dated December 20, 2021.

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FG, ASUU, IGR, Universities
On June 12, President Bola Tinubu signed the Student Loan Act into law, and over N5bn was budgeted for the scheme. Photo Credit: Bola Ahmed Tinubu
Source: Facebook

The circular limited the annual budgetary expenditure that can be covered by the IGR of these partially funded federal government-owned universities.

ASUU reacts

But reacting, the national president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, expressed his disappointment with the government's decision.

He said universities were not benefiting financially from the charges and service fees imposed on students.

He added that he was perplexed to hear that the government still intended to collect some of the subsidised charges, such as ID cards, hostel accommodations, and lab coats.

As reported by Punch, he said:

“This is what we saw when we were fighting that the government should fund universities, and Nigerians think ASUU is the problem.
“Universities are not revenue-generating agencies, so the 40 per cent of the subsidised money students pay for a hostel, medicals, ID cards, lab coat, chemicals in the laboratory should still be shared with the government?

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“Will the Presidency ask the NASS, NNPC, to give a return of 40 per cent?”

Osodeke called on parents, students, and all Nigerians to unite against what he described as an assault on the universities.

He said ASUU would engage with the relevant government agencies responsible for the policy to determine their next steps.

Nigerian vice-chancellors react

Also speaking, Prof. Yakubu Ochefu, the Secretary-General of the Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, disclosed that the government had initially deducted 25% from universities before raising it to 40%.

He urged the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) to clarify the term "IGR" and argued that universities only received user charges from students and not actual profits or revenues.

Ochefu also pointed out that universities were already in a deficit, noting that a 40% deduction would significantly undermine their financial stability.

He said:

“The Federal Government, through the Accountant General of the Federation, is citing the Finance Act of 2021 as the basis for the decision.

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“If a user charge is considered as IGR, then we have a problem with the nomenclature. The accountant general should clearly specify what he was referring to as IGR.
“If it is all these subsidised charges that the government wants to collect 40 per cent, then the universities will lead towards financial catastrophe."

Ochefu insisted that if the federal government wanted to claim 40% of what universities generated, they should provide total funding for the universities.

He mentioned that the committee of vice-chancellors would seek consultations with the ministry of education, the accountant general, and other relevant parties.

Tinubu urged to assent to bill abolishing HND/B.Sc dichotomy

In another report, Rilwan Munirudeen, president of the National Association of Polytechnic Students (NAPS), asked Tinubu to assent to the bill removing the dichotomy between HND/B.Sc.

Munirudeen said the bill would end the discrimination against polytechnic graduates in the workplace.

Source: Legit.ng

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