The Turkish Airlines’ operations in Nigeria have been suspended indefinitely by the Federal Government due to “repeated cases of poor passenger treatment.”
However, the airline on Friday morning said it had not been notified of the suspension by the government.
It was learnt that the federal government, through the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, ordered the airline to suspend its operations until it is ready to operate with the right size of aircraft that can transport all passengers with their baggage at the same time.
The government’s directive came as a result of the recent cases where the airline failed to bring passengers into Nigeria together with their baggage effortlessly checked-in.
In a letter to the airline by the Acting Director-General, NCAA, Capt. Abdullahi Sidi, which was made available by the Federal Ministry of Aviation in Abuja on Thursday, the authority expressed serious discontentment over the incidents which had been going on for over two weeks now.
Expressing displeasure, Sidi said the incidents had become so bad that most recent Turkish Airlines’ flights arrived in Nigeria without more than 85 per cent of passengers’ baggage on board.
“Our airport authority had been facing serious crises controlling the passengers at the airport whenever they arrived without their baggage.
“This issue had made passengers carry out several mob actions at our airport and it was a great threat to our airport facilities.
“In view of all these, and a series of meetings held with the Turkish Airlines’ personnel, which did not yield any solution to this problem, the NCAA is therefore left with no option than to direct Turkish Airlines to 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.” He said.
“If no remedial action is carried out by your airline, this suspension shall be effective from the 16th of December, 2019.”
Many passengers had in the past complained about the harsh treatment they received from Turkish Airlines.
Reacting to the decision by the government to suspend the operations of the airline in Nigeria, a passenger, who identified himself as Lucky, said, “Nice one. I experienced it on Sunday night.
“Thank God I was able to get my bags on Monday night.”