At Gatwick Airport in London, yesterday, the crew of Air Nigeria’s flight that flew into Lagos allegedly asked passengers to contribute £40 each to enable them purchase fuel to depart for Lagos after being delayed.
Report says about 190 passengers on Flight LOS-VK 0292/08 said they were surprised by the request. They allegedly confronted the airline officials who had made the request, and who they said quickly disappeared from the riotous scene.
An online newswire reported that the flight which was scheduled to fly out of London at 9:50a.m eventually did so at 5p.m., arriving in Lagos at 12:30a.m. But the ordeal of the passengers was hardly over.
Calls put across to Jimoh Ibrahim, chairman of the airline, on the development was not answered as at 9.20p.m.
Air Nigeria’s management, last week announced the sacking of over 500 workers at the airline and suspension of all flight services starting from today.
The airline claimed that its workers were disloyal to the management.
Air Nigeria staff which staged a protest at Lagos airport said they are being owed over N1 billion four months’ salary.
David Balami, president of pilot and engineers association, told BusinessDay that in addition to the above, Air Nigeria must immediately remit to the tax office all tax deducted from staff salaries for about two years to enable workers obtain tax certificate as required by law, remit to the staff thrift and cooperative society all monies deducted from staff salaries with accruable interest to enable workers access and receive their exit benefits from the society, remit to pension fund administrators with accruable interest all pension deductions from staff salaries for about a year to enable the workers access and receive their due pensions as guaranteed by law and issue a proper letter of disengagement which must contain all entitlements due to each worker.