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Nigerian flights disrupted as ground staff go on strike

Airlines in Nigeria said on Monday that flights were being disrupted after ground staff began an indefinite strike to demand higher pay.

Air Peace, which has the biggest fleet in Nigeria, and smaller domestic carrier Dana Air said the strike by the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) was delaying flights and they hoped the issue would be quickly resolved.

“The strike has affected all operations of all airlines being handled by the company [NAHCO],” Air Peace said in a statement.

British Airways and Qatar Airways, among the foreign airlines frequently flying to Nigeria, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The National Union of Transport Employees and Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria issued a notice last week that its members would go on strike from Monday to press NAHCO for better pay.

Flight disruptions are common in Nigeria due to issues surrounding logistics, labour union strikes and fuel scarcity.

In May 2022, the Airline Operators of Nigeria, an umbrella organisation of domestic airlines, suspended flights for days saying the price of jet fuel had jumped from 190 to 700 Nigerian naira per litre (from $0.45 to almost $1.70). The rise was primarily caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February.

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