Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Limited (BASL), operators of the Murtala Muhammed Airport Terminal Two (MMA2), has described as acts of lawlessness, the threats by Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) and the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), to disrupt operations its operations as from Monday.
The terminal operator also debunked the claim by the two unions that it layed off 20 of its staff as a result of their resolve to join industry unions.
Rather, the management operator said those who were relieved of their jobs were those who had reached retirement age and those who were not diligent in the discharge if their duties.
In a statement by the spokesman of the company, Mr. Steve Ajulo, BASL also described the unions as interlopers who would not be allowed to meddle into it's business activities.
The company said it had the statutory right to treat its staff well, a policy that been the guarding principle of the terminal operator.
Ajulo explained that the company was taken aback by their threat to further display acts of lawlessness against its organisation by the union, recalling that the same unions refused the handing over of the General Aviation Terminal (GAT) to its company in accordance with the concession agreement executed between the company in one hand and the Federal Government of Nigeria and the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) in the other hand.
He said that the two unions physically prevented BASL from exercising its constitutional and legal right of ownership of the terminal.
"Contrary to their allegation that our members of staff had their service terminated because they threatened to join a union, these members of staff who were relieved of their appointment are staff who had either attained retirement age or who were found not to be diligent in their duties," he said.
"We reserve the right to continue to improve the quality of our staff. Subsequent to this handover, the courts have confirmed that the terminal belongs to our company.
“It is interesting to note that the two unions, NUATE and ATSSSAN, actually challenged our ownership of the terminal in court in Appeal No. CA/A/141/M/09. The case was decided in our favour in the Court of Appeal on the 16th day of October 2010. Their case was dismissed for lacking any merit whatsoever.
“Sequel to this, the courts have awarded damages of N132, 000, 000, 000 (One Hundred and Thirty Two Billion Naira) in favour of our company for the liability we suffered up to 2009. As at now, the damage is in excess of N200, 000, 000, 000 (Two Hundred Billion Naira). The same unions, in continuation of their desire to sabotage the operation of the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, are now threatening to disrupt our operations.
“We will do everything within the laws of Nigeria to enforce our right to peaceful existence and to operate our business without any interference from meddlesome interlopers."