There are strong indications that the four aviation unions, comprising National Union of Air a Transport Employee (NUATE), Air Transport Senior Staff Services Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), Association of Nigerian Aviation professionals (ANAP) and the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and engineers (NAAPE) may call of its one day strike today.
Although, their joint meeting with the Honourable Minister of State, Aviation, Hadi Sirika and other key stakeholders were still going on as at 8:00pm yesterday but feelers from the meeting indicate that the strike may be called off May 23rd, 2019 being Thursday.
Speaking on the industrial action, the President, Air Transport Senior Staff Services Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), Mr. Illitrus Ahmadu told LEADERSHIP that the unions is yet to call off the strike, adding that they have met with the Honourable Minister and still preparing to issue a communique on the strike.
Promising that the statement will be out Thursday, Illitrus did not categorically say that the strike has been called off.
Corroborating Illitrus, Secretary General of ANAP, Comrade Abdul Rasaq, Saidu said the unions are yet to announce the end of the strike but that the announcement of the true position of the industrial action will be made known on Thursday.
But an industry source told LEADERSHIP that the unions have already chickened out of the strike action after about 3-hour meeting with the Minister.
According to the source, the minister was very friendly to the unionists while their discussions were very cordial.
Meanwhile, the unions had earlier on Wednesday stormed the headquarters of the NCAA at the early hours of the day, disrupting official and business activities.
The strike was coming, following a 7=day ultimatum given to NCAA by the unions which expired on Monday, 21st May, 2019. The union had last week issued an ultimatum over the new organogram approved for the agency and also other labour matters that affect their welfare.
As early as 6:30 am Wednesday morning, the unions’ members had already laid siege to the headquarters of the NCAA in great numbers, chanting solidarity songs and barring vehicular and passenger movement, claiming that the Federal Ministry of Transportation (Aviation) was feigning ignorance of their demands and neglecting the ultimatum.
In a brazen manner, some NCAA unionists were seen carrying placards that bear inscriptions such as “Our Demands, Expanded Organogram, Staff Friendly CoS, Renegotiated Staff Hwealth Insurance Policy”; “Enough Is Enough”; “Our Mumu Don Do”, etc.
In an official statement, spokesman for the NCAA, Sam Adurogboye in his reaction stated that “these issues are however, not within the jurisdiction of NCAA management. Therefore, the Regulatory Authority will work with the supervising ministry to ensure that all issues are properly addressed to the satisfaction of all parties”.
In the statement made available to LEADERSHIP, Adurogboye added that “the Authority has absolute confidence that the meeting between the Honourable Minister and the Unions will provide amicable resolution”.
The aviation agency however, appealed to all aviation stakeholders who are not able to access services from their offices on Wednesday to remain calm as normalcy will soon be restored
The unions had earlier called for a review of the recently approved Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) organogram.
According to the four unions, they have rejected the newly approved organogram for the NCAA because the newly approved organogram is completely at variance with the product of the consultation that held with the Ministerial Team that came to Lagos to discuss the expanded organogram submitted by the NCAA for approval sometime in 2018.
Their demands include immediate implementation of the new organogram for NCAA as agreed with the Ministry of Transportation, Aviation, the Management of the NCAA and the unions. Others are the implementation of the reviewed conditions of service as negotiated and the inauguration of the Governing Board of the NCAA.
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