The office of the Attorney-General of the Federation has filed a three-count charge against the Turkish Airlines for alleged impunity and violation of the rights of some Nigerian passengers.
The case which was filed before the Federal High Court in Abuja also includes two of the airline’s principal officers, Liker Ayci and Rasak Shobowale.
A statement by the Consumer Protection Council, CPC, said the legal action became inevitable following the refusal of the airline ‘s management to respond to lawful requests by the council for a full situation report on the alleged shoddy treatment of its passengers on one of its flights.
The statement reads “The accused persons were arraigned before the court for allegedly neglecting, without sufficient cause, to attend and testify before the CPC on the number of passengers aboard the Turkish Airlines Flight 623 from Istanbul to Abuja on the 25th and 31st of December, 2015, as well as the 9th of January, 2016, who were affected by its untimely delivery of baggage, thereby committing an offence punishable under section 18 of the CPC’s enabling law.”
“The Federal Government also accused the airline and its two principal officers of violating the same section of the CPC Act by neglecting, without sufficient cause, to attend and testify before the Consumer Protection Council on the detailed steps taken by the airline to provide redress and compensation to passengers aboard its Flight 623 from Istanbul to Abuja on the said dates, who were affected by its untimely delivery of baggage.
“The prosecution of the airline and its principal officers followed a warning by the Federal Government to the airline to respond within 21 daysto the Consumer Protection Council’s request for full situation report on the airline’s alleged shoddy treatment of passengers of flight TK 623 of Sunday, December 20, 2015 and other subsequent flights during the Yuletide or face prosecution.”
The statement said that Mohammed Diri, the Director of Public Prosecution of the Federation, had also in March 17, written to the Turkish Airlines on the AGF’s behalf, threatening to prosecute the airline if it failed to respond to the CPC’s demand for the full situation report, irrespective of its engagement with any other relevant agency.
Diri noted in the letter that the Airline’s refusal to cooperate with the CPC “is in breach of section 18 of the Consumer Protection Council Act, 1992 and a deliberate attempt to ridicule a duly constituted authority.”