BY Jonathan Eze
A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has granted an order restraining the 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) from disrupting the operations of the Murtala Muhammed Airport Terminal Two (MMA2).
The court yesterday granted the order restraining the three unions from carrying out their threats of disrupting the activities of the terminal in the suit filed by Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Limited (BASL), operators of MMA2.
The unions had given notice that they would disrupt operations at MMA2 from yesterday over the disengagement of some workers of BASL who they said were disengaged for their alleged attempt to join them, but who the company said had attained retirement age or were found not to be diligent in their duties.
But a statement issued by BASL yesterday said: “We will like to bring it to the attention of the public that the Federal High Court in Lagos in suit number FHC/L/CS/16412/18 has granted an order restraining the unions from carrying out their threats of disrupting the activities of the terminal.
“Pursuit to this order, members of the unions found in the premises of MMA2 would be liable to trespass. We reserve our right under the law of Nigeria to deal with such person as a trespasser.”
BASL also assured customers and passengers of MMA2 that they will continue having seamless access to the facility.
The statement said: “BASL is fully aware of the plan by some unions in the aviation sector to disrupt the operations of MMA2 over our decision to disengage some employees. Disengaging the ex-employees had nothing to do with unionism, as we were not aware of this.”
“In as much as we know that the unions have the right to protest without disturbing public peace and safety, we too reserve the right to ensure that our operations and services are not interrupted in any way whatsoever.
“Despite the fact that we have bent backwards, even beyond our contractual obligations to resolve the matter of the ex-staff amicably, the unions are still adamant in their resolve to disrupt the operations of MMA2. Any attempt to carry out this lawless act despite the subsisting court order would be viewed seriously and considered as an act of economic sabotage targeting a concession which they constantly tried to truncate. And as a law-abiding corporate citizen, we will do everything possible within the ambit of the law to protect our facility.
“We wish to use this opportunity to assure our numerous customers, including all the airlines operating from our terminal and the passengers, that MMA2 will remain open for business, as every measure has been put in place to ensure that security and safety is maintained for the flying public.”