Aviation unions protest, urge AMCON to dissolve Aero Contractors Board


Two leading aviation unions on Monday asked the Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) to dissolve the board of Aero Contractors airline, alleging mismanagement and insensitivity to staff welfare.
The National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) and Air Transport Senior Staff Services Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), made the call during a peaceful protest at Aero Contractors’ office in Lagos.
AMCON controls 60 per cent of Aero Contractors’ shares after taking over the airline’s debts to some Nigerian banks.
Over 800 workers marched around the premises of the airline at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, singing solidarity songs and carrying various placards conveying their grievances.
Addressing the workers, Mr Benjamin Okewu, President of ATSSSAN, passed a vote of no confidence on the four-man board appointed by AMCON to run the airline.
Okewu said it was unfortunate that Aero Contractors, which is the oldest Nigerian carrier, was being mismanaged by those who ought to elevate the airline to greater heights.
He alleged that the over 1,000 employees of the company would soon be thrown into the labour market unless something drastic was done.
“If AMCON wants to give us board members, they should give us professionals who have what it takes to run airlines,” he said.
Similarly, Mr Olayinka Abioye, Secretary-General of NUATE, alleged that the board, as presently constituted, was not fit to run the airline.
Abioye said AMCON should not only be interested in recovering its debts from the airline, but should be concerned with the welfare of workers of the company.
Also speaking, Mr Emokpo Ayo-Ife, ATSSSAN Chairman, Aero Contractors Chapter, decried the refusal of the management to review the existing structure, saying it has not been updated in the last eight years.
When contacted for his reaction, Mr Simon Tumba, Media Consultant to Aero Contractors Airline, said that he had not been briefed by his client about the protest.
Tumba said he was only aware of the meeting held by the unions.


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