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Flight cancellations loom as Emirates abandons Nigeria-Dubai bound travellers




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SEVERAL flights to Dubai have been cancelled following the diplomatic row between Nigeria and the United Arab Emirates.

The Federal Government of Nigeria had on Friday, limited Emirates Airlines flights from 21 weekly frequencies to one after the UAE granted Air Peace only one slot to operate into Sharjah International Airport, even though it sought three weekly passenger flight frequencies.

Emirates went further to suspend flights between Nigeria and Dubai effective December 13, 2021.

The General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) of the United Arab Emirates also wrote the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) stating that the action to limit Emirates’ flights to once weekly was unjustifiable.

On Monday, The ICIR can reliably confirm that flights from Nigeria to the United Arab Emirates were cancelled, leaving several passengers stranded.

Checks by The ICIR on Flightradar24, a global flight tracking service showed that no Emirates plane from Nigeria went to Dubai today, Monday, December 13, 2021. However, flights landed on Sunday, December 12, 2021.

An Emirates B77W (A6-EPT) Sunday flight from Lagos to Dubai with an Actual Time of Departure (ATD) of 6:39 pm landed at its destination 4:20 am.

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However, the flights scheduled for Monday December 13 did not take off at all. It was cancelled.

Similarly, an EK786 Emirates flight bound for Dubai at exactly 7 pm today from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport has been cancelled.

Flight cancellation on FlightRadar. Photo Credit: Joseph Olaoluwa_ICIR

The ICIR gathered the UAE barred airlines from conveying Nigerian passengers to their country forcing other Nigerians to seek other alternatives.

The diplomatic row between Nigeria and the UAE began as a result of disagreement relating to COVID-19 testing but has since snowballed into other issues, including the selective work permit and visa restrictions with the recent denial of flight slot to Nigeria’s national carrier -Air Peace.

Since July, more than 300 Nigerians resident in the country have lost their jobs and are left stranded and frustrated.

Several efforts between both governments to resolve the situation have been unsuccessful.

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