Posted by Sade Williams
The National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), has warned Very Important Personalities (VIPs), government officials and Nigerians to desist from flouting the Health and COVID-19 protocols in place at Nigeria airports, saying the members will not condone such ‘unruly behaviour’ from them.
In a statement titled, ‘Unruly Behaviour By VIPs At Nigerian Airports’, and signed by Comrade Ben K. Nnabue, the union’s national president, it alluded to the reported incident of unruly behaviour by ex-governor Yari of Zamfara State in which he allegedly physically assaulted an airport worker and prevented him from executing an important COVID-19 protocol of disinfecting his luggage.
The union, which described the incident and other related ones as quite abhorring and regrettable, added that it would, henceforth, declare any VIP found wanting, Persona non grata, at the airport’s environment.
“We had thought that the usual repugnant and abrasive attitude of many Nigerian VIPs would yield to the emergency of the COVID-19 pandemic and allow reason to prevail at this trying time. These incidents show that is not the case, which is quite unfortunate.
“We are compelled, therefore, to sound this note of warning to VIPs, and indeed all airport users that our union will henceforth take more than passing interest in unruliness of any kind at Nigerian airports, especially as regards flouting of COVID-19 protocols. Accordingly, all airport workers are hereby directed to immediately report any such incident to local union officials for immediate mitigating action. In addition, any airport user who falls culprit in this regard will be declared persona non grata at all Nigerian airports and may as such be embarrassed if found within any airport premises.
“While we join the Federal airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) to find mitigation for this kind of isolated case, and even as we continue to engage stakeholders on issues of occupational Health & Safety (OHS), we shall urge all airport workers to continue to discharge their duties with the highest level of professionalism in order to make the airport environment COVID-19 compliant and safe for all users.
“In this regard, we wish to allay the fears of the traveling public and invite all to feel free and safe to travel with the approved airlines and through the approved airports which have been certified by the NCAA after thorough scrutiny”, it sated.