By NATARIO McKENZIE
Tribune Business Reporter
The Director of Labour yesterday said he was “extremely confident” that all outstanding issues raised by the Bahamas Air Traffic Controllers Union (BATCU), which resulted in the ‘sick-out’ at the start of the Easter holiday weekend, had been “put to rest”.
Robert Farquharson told Tribune Business that a “lengthy” meeting between union representatives and the Department of Civil Aviation was held yesterday.
He said 19 outstanding issues were addressed, and added: “I can tell you that we addressed all of the long-standing issues. I am extremely confident that as a result of the meeting all industrial issues with the airport traffic controllers have been resolved.
“We expect to have those outstanding matters signed off on and concluded by Friday of this week. It was a very successful and productive meeting.”
Travellers suffered lengthy delays and cancellations at the Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA) last Thursday after a number of air traffic controllers engaged in a “sick out” during the busy travel period.
According to Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD) officials, arrivals and departures for the Easter holidays beginning on Thursday, April 13, through to Monday April 17, totalled 65,559 passengers.
Glenys Hanna Martin, minister of transport and aviation, said yesterday: “The focus now is on ensuring that we get on the same page with them. It’s hard to quantity the financial impact this had. It was harmful. I think it should not have happened in the first place. It doesn’t advance anyone’s cause; it just hurts the Bahamian people.”
She previously said the sick-out had given the Bahamian tourism and aviation industries “a black eye” during the peak Easter travel weekend.