The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) says air passengers are entitled to compensation from airlines for flight cancellations, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
Mrs Ify Megwa, NCAA's Acting Director, Consumers Protection Directorate, made the announcement in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday.
She said the agency was creating awareness among the public on their rights to compensation for flight cancellations, delays, damage or loss of baggage and denied boarding for reasons other than technical problems and weather.
"A passenger has the right to choose the airline he/she wants to travel with under good environment and access to information on the flight, the security and the safety of the flight.
"When your flight is cancelled by any airline either foreign or local, you deserve some compensation. In Europe; it depends on the distance while in Nigeria, it is based on the percentage of your ticket.
"Before a flight is cancelled, you must be duly informed. For international flights, it is within seven days while local is 24 hours, except if the cancellation is due to situations beyond the control of the airline," Megwa said.
She said that in such situations, the airline must be able to re-route the passenger on the next available flight to the passenger's destination, adding that the passenger was also entitled to be checked into a standard hotel, pending the next flight.
Megwa said the duty of the passengers was to ensure that they followed travelling rules like checking in in time before boarding, declaring baggage and content during check-in as well as asking appropriate questions regarding the passenger's journey.
She said when the necessary things had been done by the passenger and the airline failed on its part, a cheated person could then lodge a complaint with the airline to seek redress.
Megwa said that when the airline failed to refund or compensate the passenger appropriately, such a passenger should then report to the NCAA's Consumers Protection Directorate.
She said that at this stage, the NCAA would tell the complainant the compensation policy as provided in the Consumer Protection Act and address the issue until the passenger's right was granted.
NAN recalls that Dr Harold Demuren, Director General, NCAA, in May 2012, expressed disappointment "with certain unprofessional practices such as flight delays and cancellation by domestic airline operators.
Demuren had said that it was in the best interest of the global aviation industry for passengers to complain and to seek redress when aggrieved.
According to him, all over the world, the aviation industry is highly regulated with standards set up to ensure safety, security and comfort of air travellers.
"The Nigerian experience cannot be otherwise as we are a member of the international community and our services will, therefore, follow the global direction for air safety and comfort," Demuren said. (NAN)
Abuja, Feb. 26, 2013 (NAN) Sen. Enyinnaya Abaribe, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Information, Media and Public Affairs, has said that issues delaying the signing of the 2013 budget have been resolved.
Abaribe, who stated this at a news briefing on Tuesday in Abuja, said that the 2013 Appropriation Act will be signed soon.
He debunked insinuations that the president refused to sign the budget because the National Assembly tampered with the proposals for constituency projects.
The senator said, "We do not have any problem at all with the executive on the basis of the budget.
"All the issues that have come out in this budget have been resolved and we think that in the shortest possible time, this budget will be signed by Mr. President.
"There is nothing like overriding or veto or any such thing. It's not what the Senate has resolved in any way."
Abaribe, however, said that the Upper Chamber did not have the power to pronounce the exact day when the president was going to sign the budget.
The Senate's spokesman also explained that it was erroneous to conclude that lawmakers were given funds to execute constituency projects in their respective areas.
He said all funds, procurement and award of constituency projects were handled by the Ministries, Departments and Agencies while the lawmakers only decided where they are to be sited.
"There is nothing like the National Assembly padding the constituency budget. That doesn't happen and can never happen.
"There is procedure on how constituency projects are put in the budget. There's always a specific amount of money and that does not equate to padding.
"So, I do not think that whatever problem that they had in the budget had anything to do with the so-called constituency projects.
"What happens is that Senators are given a list of projects by the same executive and these projects are in specific areas.
"It's either in education, health or in terms of water supply. And when they now put the particular areas that they want, the different MDAs go ahead to award the contracts and do execution.
"I want Nigerians to know that there is no one person within the National Assembly that has anything to do with constituency projects except for pinpointing where the projects will go, " he said.