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Aviation workers ask govt to intervene on Oceanic-Aero face-off

Kenneth Ehigiator
Aviation industry workers have solicited the intervention of the federal government on the current face-off between Aerocontractors and Oceanic Bank Plc over the re-payment proposal of the $200 million (30 billion) owed the latter by the former.

The workers, under the aegis of the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association  (ATSSSAN) and National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers  (NAAPE),  particularly sought the intervention of Ministers of Aviation, Labour, Central Bank governor as well as the National Assembly Committees on Aviation to prevent the airline from going under.

Speaking to journalist on behalf of the aviation unions at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, at the weekend, the newly elected National President of the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE), Engr. Balami Isaac David, said that the recent newspaper publications relating to the above face-off between both companies was not a good omen for the aviation industry if not timely and carefully handled.

“We believe with the necessary intervention, a solution will be found to this problem,” Engr. Balama said.
He called for caution, particularly on the side of  Oceanic Bank in bearing its fangs on the bank account of Aero Contractors, thereby crippling the airline’s day-to-day operations.

“This act will have serious implication on the development and growth of the airline sector in the economy,” he said.
While not making claims for facilities granted to airlines by the banks, the Pilot boss re-emphasised the role of the banks in the economy as providers of financial assistance to businesses at affordable rates.

He said the workers, as stakeholders, would use necessary network to reach out to well meaning Nigerians and “our counterparts in the banking sector for amicable /acceptable solutions on this issue.”


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