Abuja – The immediate past Permanent Secretary, Minitry of Aviation, Mrs Binta Bello, on Thursday commended the leadership of aviation workers union for maintaining and encouraging industrial harmony in the sector.
Bello made the commendation at the 2015 Annual Retreat of the Joint Consultative and Negotiating Council, an amalgamation of trade unions in the ministry, in Abuja.
She was represented by Mr Aliyu Abubakar, the Director of Human Resource Services in the retreate with theme “Managing Industrial Challenges in an Emerging Economy – Aviation Sector in Focus”.
Bello said that the amalgamated unions in the aviation sector had always created avenues to ensure industrial cooperation with the aim of moving the sector forward.
The outgone permanent secretary said the government would “key into your activities by identifying with your ideals of protection of staff interest and welfare.
“It is my strong belief to be supportive of whatever can be done to cushion the effect of the current harsh economic reality of our time.’’
She said that the instability experienced by the global economy in the past four years had also affected global aviation.
Bello said that the impact of these variables had grossly affects the key players in the industry, while the aftershocks reflected on the workers within the sector.
The Chairman, Joint Consultative and Negotiating Council, Mr Hector Nnadi, said the interplay of economic forces and the activities of labour and its workforce were interwoven and indispensable.
Nnadi said that Nigeria’s aviation industry had witness some degree of evolution while still grappling with the need to align itself with modern aviation business in the global economy.
He, however, urged the workers in the sector to imbibe the principles of civility and pristine public service culture which further underscores the “change mantra” of the current administration.
According to him, Government’s expectations on improved service delivery, productivity and resourcefulness among civil servants remain non-negotiable.
“I urge all participants to reflect upon the challenges facing the country and redouble efforts in sustaining the noble legacy of our heroes past,’’ Nnadi said.
Nnadi restated the union’s resolve to always ensure the protection of workers’ interest and welfare by ensuring that management’s expectations were equally disseminated, appreciated and sustained in line with civil service ideals.
Similarly, Mr Benjamin Okewu, President, Air Transport Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSAN), said that the workers in aviation sector deserved the best and their welfare taken seriously.
Okewu also urged the workers to put in their best in terms of service delivery for the progress of the sector and the economy in general.
He said the merger of the ministry with that of transportation would not affect the programmes of the sector, adding that what was important was proper policy formulation and implementation.
The ATSSAN president also urged the government to speedily complete all the abandoned and ongoing projects at various airports around the country.
According to him, abandoned projects will pose a security threat to the nation’s airports considering the level of security challenges facing the country at present.
Okewu said he welcomed the idea of floating a national carrier, stressing that no nation’s aviation sector could grow and compete globally without a viable national carrier.
He urged the government to create an enabling environment for private investors to come in and invest in the proposed national carrier. (NAN)