Aviation unions and workers led by the Air transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, ATSSSAN, and the National Union of Air Transport Employees, NUATE, have again condemned the planned sack of about 500 staff of Nigerian Aviation Handling Company, Nahco aviance .
The union while protesting at the premises of the company on Monday, locked out the acting managing director of the company, Mr. Norbert Bielderman ‎.
Comrade Benjamin Okewu of ATSSSAN ‎ who led the Protest said the unions will not sit and watch the management of the company disengage this high number of workers.
He said despite the negotiations with the management of Nahco aviance, the company is bent on sacking the staff.
Okewu disclosed that the company is planning a systematic retrenchment of the staff over a period of time starting from next year.
The union during the protest which lasted for hours, locked the gate of the company and kept the acting managing director of the company stranded out all through the protest.
Meanwhile, the company was over the week awarded the Regulated Agent Third Country Validation Process (Ra 3 Validation) for its operations in Port Harcourt Airport by the International Civil Aviation Organisation ICAO.
The Ra3 Validation for Port Harcourt brings to three, the number of airports where nahco aviance had secured the all-important validation.
With this validation, nahco aviance has reaffirmed its position as the ground handler of choice for major airlines operating from Nigeria to the European Union.
It further means that shipments emanating from its facility would be directly accepted in all EU Countries.
Like other licenses, the Ra3 Validation which is a critical requirement for EU bound flights will aid in drastically reducing the cost of acquiring ACC3 validation for the airline’s operations.
Nahco aviance was the first ground handling company in the country to pass and receive the Ra3 Validation in compliance with the European Union regulatory requirements had previously received the first for the Lagos operations in 2013, followed by Abuja and now Port Harcourt.
These three stations are vital to its operations and efforts are also in top gear towards securing same for other equally important stations where it operates.
Announcing the feat, Seyi Adewale, Chief Commercial Officer of the company, said the import of these licenses for the client airlines would be a reduction in the cost of doing business.
“Notwithstanding the negative and unpleasant attention generated by the ‘worst airport’ toga on the Port Harcourt airport, we were undeterred and to show our patriotism, we deployed all our resources and compliance capabilities to reverse the impression. Consequently, all EU countries have been notified of Port Harcourt airport’s compliance to cargo export and this is worth celebrating”, he said.
nahcoaviance is a Nigerian diversified enterprise with interests in aviation cargo, aircraft handling, passenger facilitation, crew transportation and aviation training.
The company currently serves more than 35 airlines at seven airports across Nigeria, with plans to expand operations to other African countries.
It handles about 70 percent of domestic and foreign airlines operating in Nigeria.
It was incorporated on December 6, 1979 as an aviation servicing company but started operations in April 1979 with the commissioning of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.
The Federal Government of Nigeria, through Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), initially held 60 percent equity interest in the company while four foreign airlines – Air France, British Airways, Sabena and Lufthansa – shared the remaining 40 percent in various ratios.
In 2005, nahco aviance was privatised and subsequently listed on The Nigerian Stock Exchange in 2006.
The company is now owned by over 80, 000 shareholders, including two international airlines – Air France and Lufthansa; as well as local investors; Sycor Private Investment Limited and Rosehill Group Nigeria Limited. The company’s stock exchange symbol is “Nahco”.
Since its privatisation, the company has embarked on business diversification programme that cuts across industries and geography, as a result of which it has developed strategic global alliances through its membership of aviance, the global alliance of 10 reputable airport service providers operating from 112 stations in 17 countries, and The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA), which exists to promote the air cargo industry and world trade. In 2010, nahco aviance was awarded the ISAGO certification, the IATA Safety Audit for Ground Operations, becoming the first ground handling company in West Africa to receive one of the aviation industry’s highest honours for safety and service quality, and has been recertified till 2014.

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