Aviation unions threaten strike action over condition of service, minimum wage, others.

The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has reopened the runway 18R-36L at the Murtala Mohammed Airport in Lagos.

Four major aviation unions, including National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP) and Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees (AUPCTRE) have expressed their displeasure over the failure of the Federal Government to release negotiated Conditions of Service (CoS) of the aviation agencies since 2013 and non-implementation of Minimum Wage/Consequential Adjustment since 2019.

The aviation unions had variously issued ultimatums to the Federal Ministry of Aviation (FMA) and the six aviation agencies, including: Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) and Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT) over the matter.

With the expiration of the ultimatums since 31st January, 2019, without the demands being met, the unions have now decided to embark on an industrial action, if their demands are not met before the 8th of February, 2022.

In an official statement issued on Wednesday, jointly signed by the General Secretary of NUATE, Deputy General Secretary of ATSSSAN, Comrade Frances Akinjole, Secretary General of ANAP, Comrade Abdulrasaq Saidu and General Secretary of AUPCTRE, Comrade Waheed Sikiru stated that the meeting called by the Federal Ministry of Aviation on the same 31st of January, 2013 did not resolve the issues as there was no clear assurance from the Management’s delegation towards meeting their demands.

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According to the unions, they are left with no choice than to take the next obvious step, insisting that “in this regard, all aviation workers are hereby directed to commence total withdrawal of services from midnight of Tuesday 8th of Feb, 2022 unless, and until, otherwise directed in this same manner.”

“May we advise the managements of FAAN, NCAA, NAMA, NIMET, AIB, and NCAT, in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Aviation to utilise the one week window so provided to avert these huge crises by prevailing on the relevant government agencies to act jointly to ensure that our twin demands are met.”

The demands as stated by the unions include: “all Conditions of service of NCAA, NAMA, FAAN, NiMet and any other aviation agency pending before the Ministry of Aviation, National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission, the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation, or any other organ of government or Management of the agencies must be released wholly for implementation with the effective date of the signing of the agreement between our Unions and the respective agencies, and the new Minimum Wage/Consequential Adjustment must be immediately implemented with effect from the Law’s effective date of April, 2019.”

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The statement titled “Notice of Strike Action” also stated that, “all other forms and State Councils of the undersigned Unions are to commence joint and individual mobilisation of aviation workers nationwide and ensure total compliance with this directive in all stations of operations of the six aviation agencies without fail.”

“By this notice, all airlines, ground handling, aviation security/logistics, inflight catering, and other aviation related businesses, as well as the travelling and general public, are hereby notified that aviation services will be unavailable as from the given time until the issues are fully resolved,” the statement added.

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