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Concessionaires launch protest against aviation unions

Business activities at the Murtala Muhammed Airport Terminal Two (MMA2), Lagos was grounded for the second time in two days, as the stand-off between management of Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Limited (BASL) entered its second day.
The stand-off became worse on Thursday as concessionaires, customers, business owners and employees who use the terminal for their businesses launched a counter protest against the unions .
The protesting stakeholders described the unions’ action as a ploy to destroy one of the best flagships of the private sector industry in the provision of services in Nigeria.
When visited the terminal, members of the aviation union, some heavily built body guards, brought in by BASL and Policemen from the Airport Police Command were seen at the main gate of the MMA2 premises. While the security agencies were keep vigil at the airport, members of Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) and the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE), were also seen dancing to afro music of Fela Anikulapo Kuti, blaring from a musical instrument.
The aviation stakeholders protesting the strike were seen at the terminal carrying placards with different inscriptions such as: “NUATE/ATSSSAN let Bi-Courtney be”, “BASL is a responsible employer of labour, unions should stop troubling Bi-Courtney.”
Speaking to journalists on the shutdown of the terminal, the Head of Finance, Resort Group, Mrs. Yosola Popoola, said that the people protesting are BASL but concessionaires ,customers ,business and employees ,who according to her number over 2,000 and who contributed hundreds of millions of Naira to Nigeria’s economy who are wondering why this is happening.
She stated that there are over 500 employees in MMA2, lamenting that only 27 people, who have disciplinary issues with the company are now using the unions to destroy the business.
Her words: “Information reaching us as we speak is that each airline that resides here has bled profusely since the closure of the terminal and are endangered Even at this stage, it may be difficult for the airline to recover, which may lead to retrenchment or closure of business. All airlines are of the view that this is the most efficient terminal in Nigeria and their movement here has significantly enhanced their productivity.”

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