Nigerian Aviation Union, Ground Handling Company Disagree Over Privatization, Severance Packages

The Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) has laid charges against the ground handling company, Skyway Aviation Handling Company of Nigeria, Ltd. (SAHCOL) of perpetrating “wilful infractions” against the union. The company has also been charged by some members of the union of failing to pay workers their five years’ severance packages, which was an arrangement agreed upon before the company was handed over to Sifax Group in 2009.

In a petition to the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), dated July 31, 2017, and titled “Appeal to redress wilful infractions by SAHCOL,” and signed by Deputy General Secretary, Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), Frances Akinjole, the union said that the company had breached the BPE (Privatization and Commercialization) Act, 1999.

ATSSSAN ought to have been enrolled on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in 2014, according to the petition, which was five years after its privatization, in accordance to the BPE Act, but marveled why the management hasn’t taken the step eight years later.

However, a source said that the Director-General of BPE, Alex Okoh, visited the company on the issue for an “on-the-spot assessment,” a few weeks ago but the outcome of the meeting with the management was not made communal.

It was also recollected by the union that the BPE partook in an agreement reached with SAHCOL on August 22, 2007, on the mode of divestment of the federal government of Nigeria from the entity.

The petition persuaded the bureau to immediately intercede on the issue and warned that it might be forced to address the issue with self-help as a remedy.

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