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Air France passengers not stranded in Chad, says NCAA



The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority has dismissed claims by the Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, that Nigerian passengers travelling from Paris to Abuja in an aircraft owned by the Air France airlines were stranded in Chad.

Speaking with our correspondent on Saturday, the Director of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection of the NCAA, Michael Achimugu, dismissed Keyamo’s claim that passengers were stranded.

Achimugu explained that the aircraft had to land in Chad following a technical fault it developed due to weather.

He added that the airline has, however, lodged all the passengers in a hotel assuring that they will all be airlifted to Abuja on Monday.

Responding to questions from our correspondent on the matter, the NCAA publicist said, “ First of all, passengers are not stranded, that word is being abused these days. The aircraft developed a technical fault due to weather. So the passengers can only be stranded if the airline has abandoned them but the airline has accommodated all of the passengers in two five-star hotels and taken care of their feeding as well.

“They are not stranded, they are just concerned about when they will be airlifted back home finally. I have spoken with the airline and a ferry flight is coming so that the passengers can be airlifted first thing Monday morning. However discussions are on to see how possible it is to bring them to Abuja tomorrow (Sunday) but that conversation is not concluded yet, the only certain thing now is that they will be airlifted first thing on Monday morning but they are not stranded.”

This happened barely a week after the NCAA vowed to sanction Turkish Airlines over an alleged maltreatment of about 300 passengers in Nigeria.

Keyamo in a post on his verified X handle, stated that Nigerians who were travelling from Paris to Nigeria had been stranded in Chad.

The minister added that this was immediately brought to his attention and he immediately passed it on to the Consumer Protection Department of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority to interface with the Airline.

Keyamo who made this known on Saturday also promised to update Nigerians as the event unfolds.

The minister in his post said, “It has come to my attention that some Nigerians on an Air France flight from Paris to Abuja are presently stranded in Chad, from where the flight earlier dropped some passengers.

“I have immediately directed the Consumer Protection Department of NCAA to swing into action and engage Air France. We shall inform everyone of the outcome soon. Meanwhile, I urge @AirFranceNG to immediately issue a statement on the fate of those Nigerians.”

The minister also posted a video which showed a few Nigerians lamenting over the development.



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