Air Peace Reveals Why many Pilots were Sacked

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Air Peace has attributed the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic as the singular reason it sacked most of its pilots on Monday.

This is as the airline warned that some of the staff of the airline might be showed the exit in the future if the current sordid situation did not improve.

The largest airline in Nigeria in terms of route networks and aircraft fleet, also said that it had reviewed downward workers’ salaries by 0-40 per cent, depending on the salary grades of every staff.

A statement by Stanley Olisa, the Spokesman for Air Peace said that the decision to sack the affected pilots was painful, but inevitable following the negative impact Covid-19 pandemic has had on its operations and the global aviation industry since it broke out in China last December.

The statement insisted that the airline was not immune from the pandemic and expressed that if the management did not take the decision now, it may lead to the collapse of its entire operations.

The statement was however silent on the number affected pilots, but unconfirmed information revealed that no fewer than 70 pilots may have been affected by the purge, which represents the bulk of its pilots.

Air has about 3,000 workforce across board.

In a bid to avoid the purge, Air Peace said that it took the decision to cut salaries of workers, but regretted that despite this, it could not sustain its operations.

The statement hinted that big airlines in Europe, America, Middle East, Asia, Australia and, indeed, Africa, had either slashed jobs, cut salaries of workers in order to remain in business or close shop finally.

The statement read in part: “This decision was taken for the greater good of the company and its almost 3,000 workforce, the affected pilots inclusive. The airline cannot afford to toe the path of being unable to continue to fulfill its financial obligations to its staff, external vendors, aviation agencies, maintenance organisations, insurance companies, banks and other creditors hence the decision to restructure its entire operations with a view to surviving the times.

“The pandemic has hit every airline worldwide so badly that it has become very impossible for airlines to remain afloat without carrying out internal restructuring of their costs. Anything short of what we have done may lead to the collapse of an airline as could be seen in some places worldwide during this period.

“Rather the management of Air Peace has always been known to be increasing salaries of its employees periodically without being prompted by staff. In fact, in one fell swoop, Air Peace increased the salaries of pilots by over 100 per cent in one day! Our salaries have always been paid even before the end of the month in the last five years.”

 

The airline did not, however, rule out the possibility of re-engaging the sacked pilots in the future, but hinged this on improved operations.

A source close to the airline confided in our correspondent that Air Peace sacked no fewer than 70 of its pilots.

A few weeks ago, its pilots had complained about slash in salaries and allegedly held the airline hostage by refusing to fly.

Some of the pilots had alleged that the airline reneged on its agreement with them and had planned to embark on a peaceful protest on Monday, but were sacked by Sunday evening.

According to Daily Independent, One of the affected pilots alleged that the management had slashed their salaries by 80 per cent, which didn’t go down well with some of the pilots.


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