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Six pilots at Arik Air airline were immediately dismissed for going on strike and breaking ‘labour laws’ especially as at Yuletide period.
The management of the airline confirmed the dismissal of the pilots explaining their actions was against the existing procedures.
It also alleged that the pilots who participated in an industrial strike for “gross act of indiscipline”.
The dismissal which was announced on Friday effect from Tuesday.
The statement reads: “The Pilots did not serve a strike notice in accordance with labour laws. They neither submitted any issue of dispute to the National Association of Airline Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE), their umbrella union nor did they submit any statement of demands to the management of the company.
“Arik Air finds it rather treacherous of the pilots to contemplate a strike action at this Yuletide season which is the peak period for airlines all over the world. They peddle for naught the reputation and financial health of the company.”
The airline however decried and apologised to people who had booked flights at the time when the strike broke out.
“While great efforts have been made to minimize the impact of the illegal strike action, some fully booked flights have had to be cancelled. Arik Air regrets the inconvenience caused by this action and is doing everything in its powers to minimize the impact and discomfort to its esteemed customers.”
It was learnt that the local pilots had attempted to meet the Receiver Manager of the airline, Mr Kamilu Omokide but to no avail.
The pilots said they wanted to sit-and-talk as regard their safety and not in their will to embark on the strike.
They however rejected their sack, saying, “As safety is our main priority, we write to assert our view that no member of staff should be fired for simply desiring to keep safety at the forefront of company operations.”
The concerns raised by the unions include morale, remuneration and the current safety issues in existence.
Meanwhile, the NAAPE spokesperson, Igwe Francis Nwosu, has called for resolute dialogue between airline’s management and the sacked pilots.
He, however, said NAAPE said it was not informed before the strike action, suggested that dialogue can still resolve the issue.