Arik Air’s operations shut by Aviation Unions, passengers stranded



Wole Shadare

Aviation unions have carried out their threat to shut Arik Air operation for allegedly owing its workers several months’ salary arrears
The National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) and the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) decided to withdraw their services, due to an anti-labour practice of the airline.
This action has taken a toll on the airline and travellers booked on the airline and others that were scheduled to travel with the carrier today.
Staff of the airline and executives of the National Union of Air Transport Employees NUATE, Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), protested in front of the GAT One Terminal and later proceeded to the headquarters of the airline where they blocked the entrance gate.
Secretary General, NUATE, Comrade Ocheme Aba said they were protesting the ill-treatment of their members during the COVID-19 lockdown.
“Management of Arik air in a circular informed the staff that only 20 percent would be needed during the lockdown with salary payments of 20 percent to those who would be at home and 50 percent to those on duty unfortunately till date they were yet to be paid,” he said.
The condition of service for staff has been a lingering issue which the Arik Air management has failed to resolve.
“Workers have no Conditions of Service at all not, even a review,” he said
Arik Air Management in a letter over the weekend addressed to the Minister of Labour and Employment and copied the Aviation ministry, as well as the Director General, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), called for quick intervention to avoid a shut down of its operations.
The Chief Executive Officer of the airline, Capt. Roy Ilegbodu had called on the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika to intervene in the planned industrial action by the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) and Air Transport Senior Staff Services Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) slated for Monday.
The two unions had promised to call Arik Air workers out on a strike over alleged non payment of staff salaries in the airline since April after placing 90% of the workforce on compulsory leave.


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