At the behest of the Ministry of Labour, National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) has agreed to withdraw its industrial action and enter into dialogue with the management of Bristow Helicopters.
The airline has picketed by unions in the last two days but expects flights to operate as scheduled today.
A statement from the airline read, “We are pleased to announce that the union representing the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) has agreed to withdraw its strike action and participate in a meeting with Bristow and the Federal Ministry of Labour. We look forward to continuing to meet with the union and seek to reach a fair agreement through open discussion and feedback. We expect our flights to operate as scheduled tomorrow.”
Recall, the National Executive Council (NEC) of NAAPE two days ago directed all pilots and engineers in Bristow Group Nigeria to withdraw all services with effect from 2400hrs of Wednesday, March 30 to 2400hrs on Friday April 1, 2016 as a warning to Bristow Management.
The union in a letter signed by its General Secretary, Ochembe Abah said it has been in dispute with the management of Bristow Group over pay disparity whereby Nigerian pilots and engineers are discriminated against in favour of foreign nationals, as well as an absence of a valid conditions of Service.
According to NAAPE, all efforts to get the management of Bristow to ameliorate these acts of injustice and violation of the Constitution of Nigeria, as well as contravention of Bristow Code of Business Integrity (COBI) has failed
However, the airline had reacted stating that is saddened that the action which is coming at a time when the oil and gas industry globally is facing challenges expressing its disappointment at the inability of the union to continue in dialogue with the airline.
“This action is coming at a time when the global oil and gas industry is facing severe challenges and the Nigerian economy is undergoing serious disruptions with a number of clients reducing their activities. Bristow continues to keep its obligations to clients and employees.”