Dana Air’s failure to carry out a scheduled flight from Abuja to Lagos last night may have landed it in big trouble.
This is because an affected passenger who allegedly missed an important business meeting in Abeokuta as a result is threatening to sue the airline to the tune of N50 million for damages.
The passenger, gubernatorial candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) for Ogun State in the last election, who is also an entrepreneur, Ambassador Olufemi Ajadi had, alongside other passengers expected to be airlifted by Dana flight 356, via its aircraft 9J but the aircraft failed to arrive.
Worse, there was neither a genuine concern nor explanation by the airline management despite the restlessness of the stranded passengers many of who had earlier reassured waiting clients and family members back in Lagos and Abeokuta.
Ajadi argued that Dana Air has breached its duties under the civil aviation Act of 2006, Warsaw convention of 1929 and Montreal convention of 1999 which are all domesticated and applicable in Nigeria,
“This act of negligence and breach of contract has made me unable to meet an important business meeting scheduled for Abeokuta” a livid Ajadi had blurted.
He said in addition to the business meeting, that his workforce who were waiting for briefing towards next day production, and entire household in Abeokuta were all nerves throughout the night fearing the worst.
Ajadi wondered why such an airline could not keep its bargain and worse, just abandoning trusting passengers with all its attendant hazards.
Recalling similar incidents in the recent, he called on the relevant authorities like the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) to wade in and ensure the airlines live up to their contractual obligations.
“The bad maltreatment of Nigerians and other air passengers by these airlines should stop, and I am taking up the matter to serve as deterrent”, Ajadi said
It was gathered that the airline on Friday night did not provide the aircraft scheduled to convey passengers to Lagos, despite a 50 minutes extension from the earlier scheduled 9:30 pm departure time.
Yet passengers had booked well before the scheduled flight from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, hoping to be flown to the Murtala Muhammed airport, in Lagos.
“We bought tickets well ahead of takeoff time and there was no information from Dana that there was no aircraft to airlift us.
“Some of us kept reassuring waiting clients and associates in Lagos and Abeokuta that we would soon join them not knowing that Dana’s plea of extension by 50 minutes was a deceit.
“That was how we kept hoping until 12:00am, that they now informed us that there was no plane to convey us again.
“I have put my trust on Dana Air to fly to Lagos from Abuja to catch up a business appointment but they disappointed us.
“The Dana Air management not only failed to board us; we were left unattended to for hours, making us lose valuable meetings and keeping us out in the dark, stranded, no food, worse, causing someone to loss millions in contract. This is not acceptable.
“With this, it has breached its duties under the civil aviation Act of 2006, Warsaw convention of 1929 and Montreal convention of 1999 which are all domesticated and applicable in Nigeria,
“I am demanding fifty million naira (N50,000,000. 00) damages for making me miss the scheduled business meeting in Abeokuta.
The cost of ticket may not be much but in this case, but the breach of contract is unquantifiable”, Ajadi said.