By Kenneth Jukpor
According to passengers, Bristish Airways, one of the leading airlines in the world, has been accused of sending the worst airplanes in its fleet to Nigeria.
British Airways which recently said underlying operating profits climbed by almost a fifth in 2017 as global economic growth boosted ticket sales and helped lift margins, has become famous for operational deficiencies in recent times.
Within the space of two months, a Gold member of British Airways’ Executive Club, Engr. Emmanuel Ilori has been a victim of flights in a haphazard British aircraft, with malfunctioning airconditioners that were also dirty and mouldy.
Ilori had written to British Airways to express dissatisfaction twice.
His second letter read;
“Dear BA, Despite your response below, on previous travel of 04/01/2018 which I am still considering my further action, I travelled yesterday 22nd Feb 2018 on BA075 to Lagos. I noticed the air condition vents were dirty and mouldy, a sure health hazard with dirty air from the vents, I drew the attention of cabin crew Rebecca to the situation and was surprised when she told me ‘There is no air condition on this plane’ I asked for the cabin services manager. She promised to get him to see me but he never did. On my way out I asked her but she said he told him and admitted that the plane is very dirty and that BA has many of them? At the exit I raised the issue with the cabin services manager who denied he was told.
“It will be noted that a nursing mother with a baby was seated in seat 40A and other infants on board. Given the persisting situation I wonder if it’s BA policy to send dirty planes to Lagos? Also how many people would have gone away with respiratory infection. I’m a frequent traveler as you can imagine and am seriously concerned” Ilori wrote in his letter.
Meanwhile, in a swift reaction to Engr. Ilori’s letter, a British Airways Customer Relations Executive, Gemma Thompson apologized even as she revealed that the company was making improvements to it’s cabin environment which included spending more on specialist cleaning equipment.
“We’ve made improvements to our cabin environment which included spending more on specialist cleaning equipment. We’ve also set up new performance-based contracts with the cleaning company we use, which helps us maintain our usual high standards. We’ve also looked into our own processes to make sure the problems that are reported are dealt with as quickly as possible. We’re grateful you’ve taken the time to tell us what happened, as it’s only through receiving your comments we know where to focus our attention. We know there’s still more work to be done in this area, but I know you’ll see positive changes very soon” Gemma Thompson said in her response.
In another development, a plane full of passengers flying from London to Tenerife was forced to cross their legs for hours after the on-board toilets stopped working.
Customers on the British Airways flight endured a half-hour delay before the plane took off on Wednesday morning, last week.
And then they were left without the use of a toilet for around three hours in the air, the Press Association reported.
According to air traffic tracker Flight Radar, the 9.05am flight from Gatwick had to make an almost 180 degree turn as it was diverted to Faro airport, landing at approximately 1pm.
It was on the ground around half an hour before continuing to its destination.