Local and international flights may be shut down in Nigeria Monday and Tuesday as the unions in the aviation industry say there is no going back on the two-day warning strike declared to demand for improved wages for workers in the sector.
The unions had on Thursday declared the warning strike on Monday and Tuesday following the expiration of a 14-day ultimatum earlier issued to the federal government through the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika.
The unions include the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN); the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) and the Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP).
They are demanding, among others, that the planned demolition of aviation agencies’ headquarters in Lagos be halted.
It would be recalled that the unions and the minister have been at loggerheads over his plan to demolish the Lagos offices of aviation agencies to build an Aerotropolis (Airport City).
Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika had said there’s no going back on the planned demolition while the unions said there are no befitting offices in Abuja for thousands of aviation agencies’ staff currently in Lagos.
They are also protesting the non-implementation of minimum wage and other welfare demands in the aviation agencies including the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), and Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet).
In a joint statement issued by the unions and signed by Comrade Ocheme Aba (General Secretary of NUATE); Comrade Frances Akinjole (ATSSSAN); Comrade Abdulrazaq Saidu (ANAP) and Comrade Unoh Ofonime (NAAPE), they said, “The ultimatum has since expired and nothing tangible has been yielded from our efforts and that of the Ministry of Aviation.”
It was learnt Saturday that while the unions have notified all the airlines, no Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) has been issued as of yesterday
The NOTAM is the official communication issued by NAMA to inform the airlines of possible flight disruptions as the strike, according to the unions, is going to be total.
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