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Buhari Moves To Stop Aviation Workers From Embarking On Strike

His Excellency, President Mohammadu Buhari says aviation workers had other avenues to express their demands. Prior to the industrial action by aviation workers on Monday, January 23, 2023, the Federal Government is planning to ban aviation workers from down tooling

Aviation workers under the aegis of the National Union of Air Transport Employees, and the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria had earlier in the week declared an indefinite strike action over poor pay. And their recent development has completely disrupted both the local and international flight operations and as such prompted to the cancelation of all flights which took place place on monday, the 23rd of january, 2023. On Wednesday, January 24, 2023, after the suspension of the strike, the Federal Government apologised to air travellers over the industrial action. Inorder to bid the reoccurrence of such action, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika while addressing State House Correspondents said the government would enforce a law that would prevent aviation workers from embarking on strike because aviation is an essential service.

he minister said, “This is very important to the travelling public. First, we apologise to them; our teeming passengers in this difficult moment.“Second, this will not happen in the future by the grace of God. The Act has been assented to by Mr. President, so strikes and riots around our airports are prohibited by the laws of the land.

 

Now that we have the Act in place and assented to by Mr President and passed by the National Assembly, we will deal with it according to the law.”

The minister described the industrial action as “wrong, inhumane and against the law”. According to him, aviation workers had other avenues to express their demands.

He said, “We will ensure no essential service is being disrupted by anybody no matter how aggrieved. There are other channels of channeling issues when they arise but they are not permitted to go on strike because aviation is an essential service and is by the law of the land now.

“I will give you an example, there was an airline that had to return to base because it couldn’t land. Imagine if there was a patient on that aircraft. Imagine somebody attending to a very serious issue or matter at hand or business or a student trying to catch up with an exam and then because of somebody who is aggrieved some other person will die. “Government will no longer allow that. So it’s in the law of the land, check the Civil Aviation Act, it’s been assented to and it’s going to take place soon, in fact now, from today we will not allow that. Federal Government went further to advise workers to do away from disrupting flight operations as a means of pressing home their demands. He added that the government was open to listening to any grievances.

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