By Oboh Agbonkese & Lawani Mikairu
Lagos— ORGANISED Labour yesterday crippled Bristow and Caverton Helicopters operations over alleged unfair and discriminating labour practice by the two companies including expatriate quota abuse.
This came as Labour on the platform of National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers, NAAPE, began indefinite strike over alleged “abuse of the expatriate quota ratio, witch-hunting, victimisation, forced work without pay and gross violation of conditions of service” among others.
Yesterday’s action by NAAPE was backed by affiliates of United Labour Congress of Nigeria, ULC, including Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, who stormed the Ikeja head offices of the companies, in the early hours of yesterday and threatened to withdraw all services rendered by them to the two airlines, including supply of aviation fuel.
Speaking Mr. Tokunbo Korodo, Chairman, Lagos State ULC, said an embargo had been placed on supply of aviation fuel to Bristow nationwide until “they develop listening ears, otherwise we are ready for a head-on collision.”
Some other union leaders at the event were General Secretary of ULC, Mr. Didi Adodo; ANAP General Secretary, Mr. Abdulrasak Saidi, and NURW’s Secretary General, Mr. Segun Esan.
But the management of Bristow Helicopters claimed labour’s action was without notification to Bristow and a violation of the relevant labour laws.
However, President of NAAPE, Abednego Galadima, insisted the industrial action would continue until all pending
Reacting, Bristow Helicopters management said : “ Earlier today, the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) directed its members working at Bristow Helicopters (Nigeria) Limited to withdraw their services in support of an industrial action; an action which has since commenced without due notification to Bristow and in violation of the relevant labour laws”.
“The leadership of NAAPE has made a number of inaccurate allegations
against Bristow to support this action”.
“For the record, Bristow has acted (and will continue to act) in accordance with all national laws relating to its operations and with respect to its personnel. In addition, since its inception, Bristow continues to be the leading recruiter and trainer of national engineers and pilots in Nigeria, many of whom have since progressed to take up very senior executive positions within the Bristow Group and other companies operating within Nigeria and internationally”.
File Bristow Helicopters