Turkish Airlines has issued, but not detailed statement with regards warning by the Federal Government of Nigeria that it must solve ongoing baggage handling issues or risk being banned.
Unless the airline takes action, TechEconomy.ng learned it will be banned from Nigerian airspace and all operations to Nigeria will cease.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) may enforce the ban on Monday, December 16, 2019.
According to the Nigerian authorities, there have been multiple complaints that Turkish Airlines leaves bags behind, and it’s causing problems.
According to this report, on one recent flight to Nigeria, the airline left a whopping 85% of passenger bags in Istanbul.
The imminent ban
Friday, Nigeria’s governing aviation body issued a warning to the airline. Unless it could improve the situation, it will be banned from operating in the country. The Government described the issue as “repeated cases of poor passenger treatment” and stated that the airline must “suspend its operations into Nigeria until such a time when the airline is ready to operate with the right size of aircraft that can transport all passengers with their baggage at the same time.”
Turkish Airlines flies to four destinations in Nigeria; Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) said that the ban is the result of several weeks of incidents. It also stated that meetings were held with the airline in an attempt to solve the problem but that talks had failed.
The statement from the NCAA continues to say that “If no remedial action is carried out by your airline, this suspension shall be effective from the 16th of December, 2019.” However, as of Friday morning, Turkish Airlines said it had not received official notification of the ban.
The issue is not only affecting passengers. Acting Director-General, NCAA, Abdullahi Sidi, commented that, “Our airport authority had been facing serious crises controlling the passengers at the airport whenever they arrived without their baggage.”
He went on to explain that the safety of airport staff was in question due to the airline’s failures as, “This issue had made passengers carry out several mob actions at our airport and it was a great threat to our airport facilities.”
Turkish Airlines has issued a statement but not detailed as they failed to explain their part of the story with regards the warning:
“There are reports circulating in several news websites that claim Turkish Airlines operations in Nigeria are suspended or to be suspended by Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
“We would like to announce that our operations continue in all of our destinations in Nigeria. The news reports on the subject do not reflect the reality”.