Aviation unions have commenced their two-day warning strike, disrupting activities in the sector today.
Members of the unions have blocked entrance to the Murtala Muhammad Airport domestic terminal, leaving many passengers stranded.
The strike is happening after the meeting called by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) ended in a stalemate with the unions insisting on going ahead with the strike.
The Director-General, Civil Aviation, Capt. Musa Nuhu, called the meeting aimed at prevailing on the unions to shelve their planned two-day warning strike with representatives of the unions in attendance.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Aviation, Dr. Emmanuel Meribole was also at the meeting.
The unions comprise the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN); the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) and the Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP).
They are demanding, among others, that the planned demolition of aviation agencies’ headquarters in Lagos be halted while also advocating the implementation of conditions of service signed with staff of the aviation agencies.
Many airlines were initially hopeful that the meeting would he able to resolve the issues the unions have with the Federal Government.
But the Deputy General Secretary of ATSSSAN, Comrade Frances Akinjole in a short interview with our correspondent last night after the meeting said, “As I am talking to you, nothing has changed. If you don’t hear anything from the General Secretary, the strike continues.”
He later followed up with a text message, saying, “The strike goes as planned.”
A top Airline Chief who spoke with our correspondence said, “We are hopeful that it would be resolved later tonight, otherwise we are carrying on as if everything is going to be normal because you can’t stop your operation.”
But the strike has since commenced across all airports in Nigeria with many passengers stranded. Many of the passengers were seen trekking to the airport as the unions blocked exit to the domestic terminal one and the MMA2.
Security operatives, including police and military officers, are on the ground as the unions sing solidarity songs.