Arik hit by strike over salary arrears
Nigerian carrier Arik Airlines has been hit by “an indefinite strike” by members of three trades unions over disputes over salary arrears and contracts according to the Reuters news agency.
In a statement issued late on Monday, the unions said the strike began at midnight (2300 GMT) and would continue indefinitely until demands, including the payment of seven months of salary arrears and negotiations over contract conditions, were met.
"All ground handling services, security clearance for Arik Air ticket holders, marshalling, aviation fuel supply, air traffic controls, safety inspection, will be completely withdrawn," Reuters reported the unions as saying.
The statement was issued by the National Union of Air Transport Employees, Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria and the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers.
In a response to questions about the strike Arik Air spokesman Ola Adebanji told Reuters: “"It is not a strike by Arik staff. The aviation unions stopped our operations,"
Arik Air is planning to raise as much as $1 billion through a private share placement next year and then a possible initial public offering (IPO) in Lagos and London, its managing director said in October.
Nigeria is in its first recession in 25 years and earlier this year two other local carriers, Aero Contractors and First Nation, suspended operations amid financial difficulties.