Bristow Helicopters sacks 100 pilots, engineers

24hrs after some indigenous pilots and labour unions picketed it's Port Harcourt base, Rotary wing, operator of Bristow Helicopters has announced the sack of over 100 pilots and engineers over socio-economic impact of coronavirus pandemic.
The job erasures affected its indigenous and expatriate personnel after engagements with officials of National Association Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) to negotiate a fair and equitable redundancy compensation for the affected workers.

According to a statement by the company, the decision was based on the severe impact of COVID -19, which it said continues to have adverse effects on its operations.

The Nation reports that the decision may also be connected with the lingering industrial crisis between the company and NAAPE, which led the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and other labour affiliates to shut down operations of the company on Monday.

In a statement, the management said:” The spread of the COVID-19 virus has severely impacted all sectors in the aviation industry including our market, which primarily serves the Nigerian oil and gas sector.

“In addition, the ongoing downturn in the global oil and gas market continues to influence and determine the demand for our services.

“The combined effects of these ‘arisings’ has resulted in very significant reductions to our business particularly a reduction in the number of contracted aircraft in Nigeria.

“As a result, the company must now restructure all aspects of its business model (both Rotary & Fixed Wing), including an extensive review of its operations and we continue to drive efficiencies, but with zero compromise to safety and our core values.

“One of these measures includes the right sizing of the business to ensure that the company has the optimal level of personnel to continue the safe delivery of its services to its clients, whilst allowing the appropriate capacity for future growth.

“Accordingly, and with much regret, the company has taken the very difficult decision to release over 100 pilots and engineers (both National and Expatriates) over the next couple of weeks.”