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Hotel throws out 410 stranded Turkish Airlines passengers

by Ifeoma Okeke

January 10, 2017 | 10:29 am
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Travellers plans class suits against carriers

Crisis was averted at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos when 410 passengers of Turkish Airlines stormed the counters of the airline. The quick intervention of security operatives prevented irate travellers from taking the law into their hands.

The passengers’ frustration came to a head when the hotel where they were kept since Saturday evicted them from the facility. Following their dejection, they were forced to go to the airport to know why they were thrown out of the Golden Tulip Festac Hotel.

 They said the carrier was not forthcoming when they stormed the airline’s Head office at its Victoria Island office, Lagos to seek for a refund.

 BusinessDay’s findings show that the airline was seen selling tickets even when it was not sure of airlifting them. The airline said it does not know when it would operate out of Lagos.

 For three days, Turkish has refused to pick passengers to their destinations via Istanbul, citing weather condition in Europe, especially to its hub in Istanbul.

 Some of the passengers expressed disappointment and disclosed that they risk losing their jobs in the Europe and the US for their inability to get to their destinations.

 The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority is yet to respond to the crisis as the agency could not be reached as at press time.

 Turkish Airlines in a statement yesterday said, “On behalf of Turkish Airlines Lagos, we regret the inconveniences in the disruption of Lagos to Istanbul flight due to bad weather issue on January 7, 2017.”

 “We hereby advice you to proceed to our Head Office at 1, Adeola Odeku Street, Victoria Island Lagos for a change of your ticket to other available dates or ask for a full refund at your ticket purchase unit. We hope to see you flying with us in the future.”

 A passenger who simply gave his name as Kennedy said the airline kept them in the hotel for days without signs that they would fly today.

 He said he had exhausted all the money on him, and would not be able to afford to buy another ticket.

 In a related development, passengers who came to Nigeria from the United Kingdom, United States of America and other places for the Yuletide have decided to file a class suite against a Nigerian carrier (Name withheld) and Turkish Airlines.

 A class action, class suit, or representative action is a type of law suits where one of the parties is a group of people who are represented collectively by a member of that group.

 The class action originated in the United States and is still predominantly a U.S. phenomenon, but several European countries with civil law have made changes in recent years to allow consumer organizations to bring claims on behalf of consumers.

 Proponents of class actions state that they offer a number of advantages because they aggregate a large number of individualized claims into one representational lawsuit.

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by Ifeoma Okeke

January 10, 2017 | 10:29 am
  |     |     |   Start Conversation

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