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Union Back Down on Threat to Shut Nigerian Airports

Valentine Chinyem



Unions in the aviation sector have backed down on threat to shut down Nigerian airports  nationwide over industrial friction with the regulatory authority, the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

Comfirming the suspension of the strike to Daily Trust, the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) and the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE), both in separate interviews with said the strike was suspended following the NCAA decision “to suspend the obnoxious promotion interview” slated for Monday.

Spokesman of NCAA, Mr. Sam Adurogboye also confirmed that the action has been suspended while the unions and the NCAA management would meet on Monday.

He said there was no truth whatsoever in the report that the airspace would be shut down.

“I hereby declare to the whole world that it is not true. Nigerian airspace is open to flight operations at all times. NCAA cannot be closing airspace it’s meant to guard. Our primary responsibility is to ensure the safety of air travellers.

“The issue we have with our workers’ union is being resolved. A peace meeting has been slated for Monday between the warring unions and management. As a prelude to that meeting, the union has, on Friday 23 of October 2015, suspended their planned strike action”.

It would be recalled that the unions in a letter dated October 21, 2015, accused the NCAA of not adhering to the condition of service with respect to promotion of workers and other welfare issues.

The letter jointly signed by the Secretary General NUATE and Secretary General NAAPE, Comrades Olayinka Abioye and Aba Ocheme, respectively, threatened to shut down the agency from mid-night on Sunday until further notice.