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Nigeria issues 5-day ultimatum to Turkish Air

Are you planning to fly Turkish Airline into or out of Nigeria from Monday? If you are, it is important to pay attention to what the Nigerian government has threatened to do to the airline.

Nigerian will on Monday, 16 December 2019, banish Turkish Airlines from flying into the country if the airline fails to meet a 5-day ultimatum to operate its flights into Nigeria with big aircraft.

This ultimatum was handed down by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) in an angry letter sent to the Country Manager of the Airline on Wednesday, 11 December.

Experts said the Airline appeared not to have foreseen the Nigerian luggage challenge, leading to a climax this week when it failed to deliver “85 percent of passenger luggage” on one flight, according to NCAA.

In the letter, the acting director general of the Agency, Capt. Abdullahi Sidi, said the aviation authority has had enough of hearing complaints by passengers that Turkish Air is fond of leaving their luggage behind.

NCAA therefore asked the airline to consider suspending flights to Nigeria until it is able to procure bigger planes that will accommodate both passengers and their luggage on the same flights.

Although Nigerian international travellers are famous for their unwieldy luggage, NCAA investigations however show that Turkish Air has compounded the problem with the small-sized aircraft that it deploys on the Nigerian routes.

Experts said the Airline appeared not to have foreseen the Nigerian luggage challenge, leading to a climax this week when it failed to deliver “85 percent of passenger luggage” on one flight, according to NCAA.

NCAA expressed worries that the incessant complaints by passengers whose luggage have been left behind is turning into a security issue at the airport, hence the need to act fast to stop Turkish Air before further harm is done.

In the notice to stop flying into Nigeria from Monday, sent to the airline’s Country Manager on Wednesday 11 December 2019, Captain Sidi the measure will avert “serious crisis” that NCAA has struggled to contain each time Turkish flights arrive without most passengers’ luggage.

 “This issue has made passengers to carry out several mob actions at our airport and it is a great threat to our airport facilities,” he said.

The Agency said meetings with Turkish personnel on the issue have not provided a solution to the problem, hence the ultimatum to fly into Nigeria only with “the right size of aircraft that can transport all passengers with their baggage at the same time.”

UPDATED

Turkish Air wasted no time to comply with the directive of Aviation authorities in Nigeria as they now enter the country with wide-bodied aircraft.

The change has also been acknowledged by the Minister of Aviation Senator Hadi Sirika

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