Hadri Sirika, the minister of state for aviation, has invited aviation sector unions to a meeting, following the picketing of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) offices nationwide.
Sam Adurogboye, the general manager, public relations of the NCAA, confirmed the development in a statement issued in Lagos on Wednesday.
NAN reports that the unions had shut down offices of the NCAA to protest what they described as the new organogram approved for the agency.
The protesting unions are: the Air Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) and the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE).
Others are the Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP) and the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (AAPE).
Adurogboye said that the minister invited the unions to Abuja for a meeting later on Wednesday, to address the issues raised by the workers.
According to him, the unions’ strike has disrupted operations at the regulatory agency.
“The unions are demanding a review of the organisation’s organogram, approval of the new condition of service and inauguration of a board for the company,” he said.
“These issues are, however, not within the jurisdiction of the NCAA management.
“Therefore, the regulatory authority will work with the supervising ministry, to ensure that all issues are properly addressed to the satisfaction of all parties.”
Adurogboye said the NCAA had absolute confidence that the meeting between the minister and the unions would provide an amicable resolution.
“The NCAA hereby appeals to all aviation stakeholders, who are not able to access services at our offices today to remain calm as normalcy will soon be restored,” he stated.
In his reaction, Francis Akinjole, deputy general decretary, ATSSSAN, said the unions would honour the invitation of the minister but would not be suspending the picketing.
“We have received the invitation. But as you can see, our barricade is still at the NCAA headquarters and the protest is still on for now,” Akinjole said.
The unions had blocked the entrances of the NCAA headquarters and its annex office while chanting solidarity songs.
They also carried placards with inscriptions: “Collapse organogram structure”.
“Our Mumu don dooo”. “Our demands: expanded organogram, staff friendly condition of service, negotiated staff health and insurance policy.”
However, the protest did not disrupt flight operations at the Lagos airport as airlines and intending passengers were going about their businesses unhindered.