By Victor Ernest with Agency Report.

The National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) has urged the Federal Government to curb the influx of expatriates in Nigeria’s aviation sector.

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The union’s General Secretary Olayinka Abioye made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Lagos.

Reportedly, there are 2, 226 active licensed pilots, 1,532 aircraft maintenance engineers and 543 flight dispatchers in the aviation industry.

There are also 313 air traffic controllers, 1,888 cabin crew, 254 air traffic safety electronic personnel and 100 aeronautic station operators.

Abioye said the unions in the sector were, however, concerned with the high number of foreigners among these employees.

According to him, the influx of these foreign expatriates has affected several qualified Nigerian aircraft pilots, engineers, technicians and others.

He said they are trying to get the figure of expatriates within the system which would be completed and sent to the federal government within few weeks.

He said the union have complained to the government through the ministry of transportation and aviation, and they have assured them that measures were going to be put in place to checkmate influx of expatriates in the sector.

According to him, the union have not seen any semblance of such interventions from the government. ”It is very worrisome,” he added.

He disclosed that the unions may have to petition the National Assembly to summon those in charge of granting work permit to these foreigners if the government fails to address the issue.

“We are again using this medium to call on the government to review the issue of expatriate quota,” he added.