Aviation unions in Nigeria on Wednesday directed their workers to withdraw services to all public and private Owerri flights (both inwards and outwards) with effect from midnight.
The unions said the strike is indefinite until otherwise directed by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC).
The unions are the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), the Association of Nigeria Aviation Professionals (ANAP), the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE), and the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporation Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees (AUPCTRE).
The directive by the aviation unions was in compliance with the joint session National Executive Council (NEC) session of the NLC and the TUC on Tuesday.
NLC President, Joe Ajaero was attacked in Owerri, the Imo State capital, last Wednesday just before a planned protest in the state to press the state government to heed the demands of the workers in the state.
The NLC and the TUC had since ordered shutdown of essential services in Imo as protest for the attack on Ajaero and declared a nationwide strike effective November 14, 2023.
In a strike notice to aviation workers on Wednesday, the five bodies ordered their members to withdraw services to all inwards and outwards Owerri flights.
The strike notice was co-signed by NUATE General Secretary, Ocheme Aba; ATSSSAN Deputy General Secretary, Frances Akinjole; ANAP Secretary General, AbdulRasaq Saidu; NAAPE Deputy General Secretary, Umoh Ofonime; and AUPCTRE General Secretary, Sikiru Waheed.
“In addition, the person of Hope Uzodimma, the Governor of Imo State is hereby declared persona non grata at all airports in Nigeria until he purges himself of bestial tendencies. Our unions will make further efforts through our international affiliations to blacklist Hope Uzodimma worldwide.” The notice partly read.
“Furthermore, all aviation workers in Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport, Owerri are hereby directed to stay at home, also with effect from midnight today (08/11/2023) as directed by NLC and TUC.
“By this notice, the airports’ managements, airlines operating into and out of Owerri, intending airport passengers into and out of Owerri, and the general public are hereby advised about this situation so as to be forewarned.”