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Air Travelers Languish for the Lethargy of Aviation Managers
Access to the two domestic terminals at Lagos Airport was effectively blocked as passengers walked long distances. Monday 17th April 2023.
As the warning strike rocket launched this morning by the aviation workers’ unions ricochets throughout all airports nationwide, the very people the industry is to serve have been subjected to pains and anguish for not being able to meet up with their travel schedules.
The threat of a warning strike the unions announced on the 13th of April 2023, was left unattended until less than 12 hours before the takeoff date and sadly, the fire brigade approach yielded little if any as the passengers were made to bear the brunt of some people’s inertia.
As the workers took charge of strategic positions to ensure the impact of their actions was felt, vehicular movement was effectively put on hold hence passengers were forced to walk long distances to the terminal buildings.
Most of the workers’ requests have spanned a decade. Critical appraisal shows none should last 30 days without being conclusively concluded, in better climes.
THE UNIONS GROUSE AS TRANSMITTED TO ALL CONCERNED ON 13th APRIL 2023:
On the 7th of February 2023, the following unions, National Union of Air Transport Employees, NUATE, Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, ATSSSAN, Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals, ANAP, Nigerian Association of Aircraft Pilots And Engineers, NAAPE, and the Amalgamated Unions of Public Corporation, Civil Service Technical, And Recreational Services Employees, AUPCSTRE, issued a 14 days’ ultimatum which the unions said: “has since expired and nothing tangible has been yielded from our efforts and that of the Ministry of Aviation”.
According to the reminder letter sent to all concerned and to security agencies, the unions claimed that they would embark on a two-day warning strike because of;
- None implementation of minimum wage consequential adjustment with arrears for NIMET staff since 2019.
- Refusal of the National Salaries Income And Wages Commission, NSIWC, and Office of the Head of Service of the Civil Service of the Federation, OHCSF, to release the reviewed Conditions of Service, CoS, of Nigeria Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology, NCAT, Zaria, and the Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NIMET, as negotiated between the unions and the agencies, and as duly conveyed by the Federal Ministry of Aviation since upward of 9 years
Another grievance the unions claimed provoked the launch of the “warning strike rocket” was their observance thus; “it has become evident that the Honourable Minister of Aviation remains adamant in carrying out his threat to demolish the headquarters of FAAN, NCAA, NAMA, in Lagos in spite of all our entreaties towards caution”.
CONDITIONALITIES FOR INDUSTRIAL HARMONY
The unions urged that should the federal government’s ministry, parastatal or department concerned give dispatch attention to the two major demands here below, the indefinite strike would have been averted;
** Implementation of NIMET consequential adjustment and the payment of arrears that have accrued.
Unconditional release of….
** The Condition of Service, CoS, of NAMA, NIMET, NCAA, and NCAT, are immediately released and the demolition already started about two years ago is put a stop to, all aviation workers are hereby directed to withdraw all services in the sector on 17th and 18th of April 2023, as warning strike.
The unions however gave a caveat that, “should the warning strike fail to achieve the desired result, an indefinite strike action shall become inevitable”