There is an ongoing major flight disruptions across many airports in Nigeria as the workers of the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) led by the unions have embarked on an indefinite strike.
The strike which commenced early today led to many airlines including foreign airlines being handled by the ground handling company experiencing flight disruptions.
According to information made available to the Nigerian Tribune, many airlines could not operate their scheduled flights with many passengers billed for morning flights getting stranded with no workers of NAHCO in sight to handle their flights.
Most of the foreign carriers operating into Nigeria are the clients of NAHCO.
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Amongst the top foreign airlines affected by the strike was Qatar Airways which could not operate its its early morning Lagos/Doha operations.
The Middle East carrier which flew into the country early in the morning was forced to fly back to Doha with no passengers due to the non availability of NAHCO workers whose main jobs include loading and checking in of passengers’ luggage.
The National Union of Air Transport Employees [NUATE] and the Air Transport Senior Staff Services Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) had earlier put the workers on notice of the strike following what they called the uncooperative attitude of the NAHCO management towards resolving the welfare issues raised by the workers through the unions.
In the circular issued by the unions and signed by the general secretary of NUATE, Comrade Ocheme Aba and his ATSSSAN counterpart, Comrade Francis Akinjole, the workers were directed to withdraw their services nationwide by embarking on an indefibe strike until the issues are resolved.
As at the time of filing this report all tye airlines being handled by NAHCO have been left in confusion just as their passengers.
The strike embarked on by NAHCO has however become an advantage to the Skyway Aviation Handling Company which carries out similar functions of NAHCO.
According to information gathered, some of the affected airlines particularly the foreign ones have temporarily shifted their patronage to SAHCO meaning extra cost to the sister company but great losses to the airlines.