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British Airways planes grounded by pilots over pay dispute

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British Airways pilots began a 48-hour strike on Monday, grounding most of the airline’s flights and disrupting thousands of travellers’ plans in unprecedented industrial action over a pay dispute.

The British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) last month gave the airline notice of three days of industrial action in September, in what is the first ever strike by BA pilots.

Following the strikes on Sept. 9 and 10, another day of industrial action is scheduled for Sept. 27.

BALPA has said that British Airways (BA) should share more of its profits with its pilots. BA has said the strike action is unjustifiable as its pay offer was fair.

Thousands of customers have had to seek alternative travel arrangements, and the airline has come in for criticism over how it handled communications with passengers ahead of the strikes.

“This strike will have cost the company considerably more than the investment needed to settle this dispute,” BALPA General Secretary Brian Strutton said in a statement on the eve of the strike.

“It is time to get back to the negotiating table and put together a serious offer that will end this dispute.”

Last Thursday, the airline dismissed a new offer by BALPA as an “eleventh hour inflated proposal” that was not made in good faith. BALPA had said it would have called off the strikes this week if BA had engaged with the offer.

A spokeswoman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged both sides to end the dispute.

Asked about the strike action, a spokeswoman for British Airways said: “We remain ready and willing to return to talks with BALPA.”

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is investigating the airline after it enraged some travelers by wrongly telling them their flights had been canceled.

The regulator also reminded the airline to proactively tell customers of their rights. During the strikes, BA must offer the passengers reimbursement for canceled flights, alternate travel arrangements under comparable conditions or a new flight at a later date.

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OPAN disassociates self from online group called ‘OPMAN’

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The Online Publishers Association of Nigeria (OPAN) wishes to disassociate itself from the group known as Online Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria, which cleverly adopts the acronym ‘OPMAN’.

This statement serves as a notice to individuals or organizations having dealings with this group, ‘OPMAN’ as our lawyers engage the Corporate Affairs Commission to address this development, OPAN said in a statement adding that it has no affiliation whatsoever with the group.

OPAN President, Austyn Ogannah, said: “Our attention has been drawn to the existence of a group which adopted a name similar to ours and goes by an acronym that is closely identical to ours.

“For the record OPAN has no affiliation with this group or its promoter(s).

“The Online Publishers Association of Nigeria (OPAN), registered at the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) on 14th of November 2011, is the umbrella body for organisations and persons in the online/digital media space with a mandate to self regulate practitioners and promote responsible use of the new media in Nigeria.”

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NITDA sets up team to investigate, protect Nigerians from data breach

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The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), today inaugurated the NITDA Data Breach Investigation Team at the Agency’s Corporate Headquarters, Abuja. The effort was aimed at safeguarding the rights, privacy and data of citizens in the country.

The Director General of NITDA, Mr Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi CCIE, while inaugurating the Team said thay, “ever since the Agency issued the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) on 25th January, 2019, there has been an unprecedented interest in the regulation as witnessed by the various engagements and inquiries about it”.

He further stated the objectives of the National Data Protection Regulations includes: Safeguarding the rights of citizens on data privacy; Fostering safe conduct in transactions involving the exchange of Personal Data; Enabling Nigerian businesses to be globally compliant & competitive to create jobs for eligible Nigerians.

Inuwa said that, “NITDA, as the IT sector regulator has a duty to ensure that the objectives of the regulations are being realised”. The highlight of the event was the inauguration of a 15-man committee that will investigate and checkmate any breach of the National Data Protection Regulations (NDPR).

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Reps ask CBN to suspend cashless policy

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The house of representatives has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to halt the controversial cashless policy it recently re-introduced.

At plenary session on Thursday, the lower legislative chamber said the policy leads to significant decrease in credit extension by Nigerian money deposit banks.

The also said it has negative impacts on small and medium enterprises “which are clearly the engine room for growth of the economy.”

In a circular released on Tuesday, the CBN had directed all deposit money banks in the country to charge 3% processing fees for withdrawals and 2% for deposits of amounts above N500,000 for individual accounts.

Corporate account holders will be charged 5% processing fees for withdrawals and 3% for deposits of amounts above N3 million.

The directive was, however, criticised by some Nigerians for various reasons.

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