20th May, 2013
Air travellers in Nigeria waited helplessly at terminal buildings on Monday as a strike by aggrieved workers of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, paralysed flight operations nationwide.
Flights from Lagos to Abuja, Port Harcourt, Uyo, Calabar and other destinations were delayed for several hours as the 14-day ultimatum given to NAMA management by the angry workers expired on Monday.
“Our flights are being delayed because of NAMA strike. Many flights were delayed in the morning and it’s causing delays nationwide up till now,” an airline chief told our correspondent.
“They are not clearing airlines on time, things are going on very slowly,” another airline spokesperson said. Both pleaded anonymity.
“I am going to Calabar and they just announced through the public address system that flights are being delayed because of NAMA strike,” Sophia, a passenger to Cross River State said.
All the airlines were affected and the strike was announced to passengers via the public address system.
Comrade Olayinka Abioye, the Assistant General Secretary of the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, ATSSSAN, told our correspondent that the closure of the Nigerian airspace may be total if NAMA management did not heed workers’ demand.
“Workers are poorly treated and NAMA management has been insincere with them. In any case, if a meeting that would take place in Abuja today did not produce any result, the entire airspace would be closed and no plane would take off or land,” Abioye said.