February 6, 2023

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AON Appeals for Passengers’ Understanding, Cooperation; Promises Drastic Reduction in Delay, Cancellation

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Right: Barrister Allen Onyema, Vice Chairman, AON, Mr Ikechi Uko, Founder AKWAABA, Ethiopian Airlines Rep, Mr Basil Agboarumi, MD/CEO Sahco Plc, at 25th LAAC International Conference, Sheraton, Lagos

An appeal has been made to air passengers nationwide, on behalf of the Airline Operators of Nigeria, AON, that they bear with the domestic airlines for the delays and cancellations experienced in recent time.

Also, the Culprit for most of the delays and cancellations have been identified as adverse weather conditions and technical glitches potent enough to threaten safety.

The Vice-Chairman, Airline Operators of Nigeria, AON, barrister Allen Onyema, made the appeal in a chat with aviation correspondents and editors, on the sideline of the 25th annual international conference hosted in Lagos, by the League of Airport and Aviation Correspondents, Nigeria, LAAC-N.

Onyema said flight cancellation often comes at a great cost to the airlines’ management unlike when the scheduled flight is promptly executed.

He explained that when passengers heard an announcement about the cause of a delay that borders on weather, passengers he said are wont to call the destination for a simplistic confirmation.

Onyema said that oftentimes, passengers are angered the more when their relations or business partners at the destination should confirm through a phone call that weather at the destination city is clear, bright and sunny. He added that such feedback often got most people enraged and at times they violently attack airline officials.

Barrister Allen Onyema, Chairman, Air Peace, explained that most of the passengers are ignorant of the clear and present danger called, en-route weather conditions, which is a strong factor for flight safety.

Hence, he appealed to the little over 9 million domestic air passengers to bear with the airline operators as they are in business to serve Nigerians yet, for no reason will safety and comfort be compromised, the AON Vice-Chairman affirmed.

Onyema further narrated that a delay at one airport could create chains of serious disruptive effect for passengers at numerous other airports thus instigating unmitigated delays throughout the day’s operations.

He explained that a delay at one point could reverberate in nearly dozens of other routes or more for which the particular aircraft may have been scheduled to serve.

The Air Peace Chairman however appealed to passengers to be calm and cooperate with the airline and airport personnel as their safety is the paramount consideration in all the airline does, whether it leads to cancellation or delay.

He reminded travellers that there is no parking bay in the sky for conducting checks and fixing glitches hence, the seemingly delay. He assured that things are now looking up for the better in the industry.

Moreover, Allen Onyema urged the airport managers to improve on facilitation as lack of adequate equipment at the terminal oftentimes, instigated delays that were avoidable

He cited a situation which he said airlines often experienced at an airport during the peak period with the departure hall filled to the brim by the passengers. He said that sadly, out of about ten (10) check-in counters, only one or two would be functioning while about five (5) airlines would have positioned their aircraft for take-off barely at the same time.

The AON chieftain lamented that precious time is often frittered away, due to such scenarios and other similar circumstances that are very well preventable.

Onyeama called on the terminal managers to be up and doing for the sake of Nigerian passengers and by extension the air transport industry whose players had made the heavy investments so as to get the nation’s gross domestic product and income quadruple as a means to pull the country out of recession

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