Some of the 70 pilots who were recently sacked by Air Peace will be recalled to their jobs following the intervention of the Federal Government.
This was the outcome of an intervention meeting yesterday, called by the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, between airlines management and the leadership of the National Association of Airline Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE).
The spokesperson of the Federal Ministry of Aviation, Mr. James Odaudu, confirmed this in a statement issued in Abuja, yesterday.
Odaudu said a verbal agreement was reached as the Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, acceded to the Minister’s appeal for the recall of the maximum number of pilots that the airline could accommodate without going under.
The statement, titled: “Air Peace to recall some sacked pilots as Sirika intervenes”, said the pilot’s association, led by its Chairman, Galadima Abednego, agreed that some missteps could have been made in the course of the standoff between the airline and the union.
It said the association appealed to the Minister to intervene in order to resolve the impasse between the union and the airline.
Abednego stated that as a union, it was painful to see a large number of their members thrown into the labour market, even as he further appealed to employers of labour to see the union members as partners and not adversaries.
On his part, Onyema expressed his sadness and disappointment over what he called the ingratitude of some of the airline’s pilots despite everything done to make them comfortable on their jobs.
He recalled how Air Peace had trained over 80 pilots and an equal number of aircraft engineers, giving its staff the best remuneration package within the sector only for them to disappoint at a time their understanding was needed.
The Air Peace boss, however, commended Sirika for providing the required leadership for the industry and promised his full cooperation in ensuring the growth of the aviation sector in Nigeria.
Sirika, in his remark, called for the understanding of everyone, especially the labour unions with regards the prevailing situation in the aviation industry.
He said it was not time for unnecessary upheavals.
He commended Onyema for his contributions in developing the nation’s aviation industry.
“The Minister appealed to him to recall the maximum number of the sacked pilots that the airline can comfortably accommodate in the prevailing circumstances to which the airline operator agreed,” the statement added.
Sirika also called on all stakeholders in the aviation industry to put all hands on deck in ensuring a rapid recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.