‘Give Us Our Money’ -Workers Of Dana Air Protest Unpaid Salaries

Disgruntled protesters at Dana Air office in Lagos State

Staff members of Dana Airline on Tuesday picketed the aviation office located at Oshodi, Lagos state over unfair labour practices.

The airline had claimed that the workers’ disengagement was responsible for the ongoing audit by the aviation regulators.

Recall that the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) withdrew the operational licence of the airline, due to a runway skid incident in April.

The NCAA also cited the reoccurrence of similar events after a compliance assessment of Dana’s track records.
In response to the NCAA sanction, the airline laid off its staff members.

Some protesting staff members were seen with placards with inscriptions such as; ‘Give us our money’, ‘A airline owing its staff can’t be safe’, and ‘Systematic thieving’, among others.

Addressing journalists, the Training Manager of the airline, Magdalene Onyeukwu, accused the airline of salary arrears while noting that staff members will not relent until they get justice.

She said, “I have been with Dana since 2008; I was part of those who participated in the demo flight that gave Dana its licence; even when there were challenges when salaries were not paid, we remained committed until this issue of runway incursions, which is normal.

“But before we knew it, they started sending us WhatsApp messages saying our services are no longer needed. Who does that? What about our gratuity, pension and even our April salary? This is not possible after 15 years of service?”

Also speaking at the protest ground, an Aviation security supervisor, Eze Chidibere, accused Dana of fraudulently deducting staffers’ contributing pensions but refusing to pay the same into their pension accounts.

“We are here to demand our rights; after serving Dana Airlines for several years, they suddenly sacked us all saying that our services are no longer required. But it is on record that Dana Airlines flew till April before it had an incursion and as I am talking to you, April’s salary has not been paid and my children are at home because I have not been able to pay their fees.

“So many people are in our outstation and couldn’t make it here today because of logistics. If not, this place would have been physically filled by our over 500 staff members because our people are seriously angry.

“Also, if an organisation is sacking its staff, it should pay a one-month salary in lieu because it is also expected that staff should give a one-month notice to the organisation before leaving, but they refused to honour the same rule.

“Dana Airlines has been deducting our money but hasn’t remitted the same to our pension account. This, among others, is our reason for begging Dana to immediately pay us to avert a legal battle,” Chidiebere claimed.