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NBA Backs FG’s Ultimatum on Air Fare Disparity


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Abuja

Image: Nigerian Bar Association President ( Mr Joseph Dauda (SAN )

 

April/3/2012

 

The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has given support to the Federal Government on the 30-day ultimatum issued to foreign airlines operators-British Airways (BA) and Virgin Atlantic Airways (VNA) to correct regional fare imbalance whereby Nigerian passengers were charged higher than other passengers.

 

National President of the NBA, Mr. Joseph Dauda (SAN), disclosed this yesterday, when he led other members of the executive on solidarity visit to Aviation Minister, Princess Stella Oduah in her office. Speaking at the occasion, Dauda said the action of government to protect Nigerian passengers from undue exploitation by the British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and all other foreign airlines as well as the ultimatum had the full support of the NBA.

Dauda said the disparity in the fares charged passengers travelling from Nigeria to the UK and those travelling from Accra, Ghana are very obvious and unjustifiable, and commended the courage of the Oduah to rise upon to the challenge of halting this unfair treatment of Nigerians by foreign companies.

 

“The disparity is very obvious and unjustifiable. These foreign airlines think they have friends in high places and can therefore afford to do as they like, but we are here to assure you of our full support. Now the ultimatum has been issued and we know that violations come with remedies; they should not think we are without remedies.

“The NBA thinks you need support and has mandated us to get in touch with you. We are ready and willing to partner with you on two fronts-advocacy and our legal services,” he stated.

 

Dauda also remarked that the Association was ready to partner with the Ministry with regards to offering its services in cases of litigations or review of Treaties and Bilateral Air Service Agreements it may have signed with other countries.

Dauda lamented that because of the fare disparity, Nigerians are now forced to bear the inconvenience of travelling to Accra, Ghana in order to make some savings, declaring that “it is time to say enough is enough of this discriminations in trade practices.”

He observed that the Minister appeared to be fighting the battle alone, “which we think is not right; it is unfortunate that those well-placed Nigerians who should weigh in on this matter are taking the back seat because of their personal interests and ambitions even though they all know this is a matter of patriotism and nationalism.”

 

The NBA boss further commended the effort of the ministry in revamping the infrastructure at the nation's airports through the Remodelling Projects.

“It is gratifying to note that serious remodelling works are going on at various airports and people are seeing it for themselves. They are even wondering where all the money is suddenly coming from when over the years nothing was done to halt the rot at the airports. We know what you met on ground and we are seeing the transformation,” he said.

 

In her response, Oduah expressed appreciation for the solidarity and offer of partnership from the NBA in the battle to restore parity in the regional fare regime, stressing that she is motivated by the desire to do what is right for the people and government of Nigeria.

The minister stated that the fare imbalance is a measure of the disrespect British Airways and other foreign Carriers hold Nigerians, stressing that “as long as i am here, it is my responsibility to protect Nigerian passengers.”

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Updated 7 Years ago
 

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