Aviation Unions Opt Out of NLC Warning Strike, Prioritize ICAO Audit

Aviation worker unions affiliated with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) have announced their decision not to participate in the two-day warning strike called by the NLC in response to the removal of fuel subsidies, citing concerns related to the ongoing International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) audit. The unions include the Association of Nigeria Aviation Professionals (ANAP), the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE), and the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE).

Comrade Abdulrazak Saidu, the General Secretary of ANAP, explained that their choice to abstain from the strike was made after a thorough evaluation of the internal dynamics within the aviation industry and its potential consequences. He emphasized the union’s commitment to safeguarding Nigeria’s position during the ICAO audit.

Saidu stated, “The aviation union decided not to comply fully with the directive of the National Executive Council (NEC) of NLC so that the ICAO auditors already in the country would be able to carry out their assignment without disruption. NLC NEC has taken the decision and directed all affiliates to mobilize for the two-day warning strike beginning tomorrow (Tuesday). In line with the directive of the NEC NLC, we have issued a circular to that effect in the Aviation industry. However, after a wide range of consultations in that regard, and considering the volatile and international nature of the aviation industry and best practices, we have discovered that the warning strike will negatively affect the ongoing audit of aviation facilities in the country.”

He further added, “Given this development, we cannot allow the disruption of the ongoing 10 days audit to cause Nigeria to be sanctioned by the international aviation body. Therefore, all normal activities regarding Aviation business should continue uninterrupted.”

Additionally, the Air Transport Staff Senior Services Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) has also decided not to participate in the warning strike, citing the stance of its parent body, the Trade Union Congress (TUC), which believes that negotiations with the government have not reached an irretrievable breakdown. Comrade Frances Akinjole, General Secretary of ATSSSAN, emphasized the need to avoid friction among workers at workplaces and encouraged members to use their best efforts to maintain harmonious working conditions.

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