Nigeria: Aviation Unions Declare Indefinite Strike

Flight operations may be disrupted as from tomorrow (Wednesday) as aviation unions have declared an indefinite strike in the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

The industrial action begins by 5:00am on Wednesday, according to the unions in a notice issued on Tuesday, saying the action followed the expiration of the seven-day ultimatum earlier issued to the Federal Ministry of Transportation (Aviation) and the NCAA.

Daily Trust reports that the unions had threatened to shut down the sector over the present management structure (organogram) of the NCAA which they argued stifles career progression.

The notice of strike came a few days after the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, appealed to the unions to embrace dialogue on the issue rather than shutting down the sector, saying the organogram could be "tweaked".

The unions include the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), Association of Nigeria Aviation Professionals (ANAP) and the National Association of Air Transport Pilots and Employees (NAAPE).

In the notice signed by the General Secretary, NUATE, Com. Ocheme Aba; Deputy General Secretary, ATSSSAN, Comrade Frances Akinjole; Secretary General ANAP, Comrade Abdulrazaq Saidu; Deputy General Secretary, NAAPE, Comrade Umoh Ofonime; the unions said the Ministry had failed to address any of its demands.

They said the Ministry and the NCAA only reacted to its ultimatum which elapsed on Monday with "only half-hearted measures".

"Having therefore exhausted all efforts and patience on the issues, we are left with no other option. Our unions hereby direct all staff of NCAA nationwide to commence an indefinite industrial action with effect from 0500hrs on Wednesday 22nd May, 2019", the statement said.

The notice said the situation "will remain so" until the demands of the unions were met.

The unions also directed all NCAA workers to assemble at the entrance/gate of the various work places and take directive from branch union officers on location until directed otherwise.

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