The factional Labour leaders, United Labour Congress (ULC) and the Nigeria Pilots and Engineers union on Tuesday closed the offices of Arik Airlines, due to the inability of the airline to pay its workers for seven months.
The Acting Chairman of ULC, Alhaji Tokunbo Korodo, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in a telephone interview in Lagos that the union could no longer tolerate the inhuman treatment of Arik’s management to workers.
Korodo said that apart from owing workers for seven months, the management of the airline was not remitting the taxes of workers to relevant bodies.
The unionist said that five executive members of the ULC working in Arik had been sacked.
“We have shut down Arik Airlines operations, due to non-payment of seven months salary and non- remittance of workers’ taxes to relevant agencies.
“The office will remain shut until the end of the year, unless the management reaches a compromise with our union on the anti-labour issues.
“We cannot continue to watch Arik Airlines’ management maltreating our members. Enough is enough.
“It is a pity that many intending passengers are stranded because of our action but we have appealed to the management to look into our demand but to no avail.’’
Korodo, who is also the South-West Chairman of NUPENG, said that the union had directed tanker drivers to stop supply of aviation fuel to the airline until it resolved the issues.
He said the action was not limited to Arik’s Lagos office, describing the development as a nationwide clampdown on Arik Airlines.