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NiMET staff to strike over 45-month wage arrears

Aviation unions, including the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), the Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP), and the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees (AUPCTRE), have instructed staff at the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NiMET) to commence strike action on Monday, May 20, 2024.

This was disclosed in a letter dated 14 May 2024.

The strike is being called due to the management’s failure to address 45 months of minimum wage arrears and consequential adjustments for staff members.

The union, represented by the three General Secretaries: Ocheme Aba, Abdulrasaq Seidu, and Waheed Sikiru, wrote to NiMET’s Director General, Prof. Charles Anoske, with the subject line ‘Re: Failure to Pay 45-Month Arrears of Minimum Wage Consequential Adjustment—14 days ultimatum.’

Although an ultimatum had been issued, management’s response was a proposed compromise to pay off the 45 months of arrears in installments.

They also expressed dismay that the agency’s staff have been awaiting the palliative payments sanctioned by the Federal Government since October 2023. Additionally, they highlighted that the 25-35 percent salary increase has not been implemented and that NiMET has been excluded from receiving Peculiar Allowances.

“Furthermore, our Unions, through a joint letter dated April 4, 2024, requested a review of the outdated conditions of service. To date, the management has deemed our Unions unfit for any response,” the letter read.

The above catalogue of woes, and others unmentioned confirm that NiMET Staff have been consigned to the lin bin of abject poverty – worse than any existing aviation establishment. In our considered view, it is inhuman on the part of management to be forborne with these conditions and irresponsible on the part of unions to tolerate this situation for this long.

“Therefore, this letter serves as notice to the management of NiMET that the staff members of the agency are, by a copy of this letter, directed to withdraw all services with effect from Monday, May 20, 2024, unless and until the outstanding 42 months arrears of consequential adjustment is fully liquidated.

“NIMET Salary structure is adapted to an appropriate Federal Government approved structure and all accruable payments liquidated, Management commences review of the outdated CoS with our Unions with a definite timeline for delivery and actualisation.”the letter reads.