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Heathrow’s handling of Ghanaians beyond me - Cecilia Dapaah

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Minister-designate of Aviation Cecilia Abena Dapaah has said addressing the bad treatment meted out to Ghanaian passengers at Heathrow airport in the UK is beyond her Ministry, but has assured Ghanaians that the government will find ways of dealing with the problem.

Her comment follows concerns raised by Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu with regards to the treatment meted out to Ghanaian travellers at Heathrow.

During Wednesday’s vetting by the Appointments Committee, Mr Iddrisu said: “Ghanaian passengers on British Airways have some treatment that many are unhappy about and it’s been reported widely. The way they are treated on arrival at Heathrow defies what is dignifying for a respected international traveller. Relative to that is the charge on kilos. If you are flying a certain airline to Nigeria, you are treated differently and in the Ghanaian case you lose off in terms of kilos. Can you assure this committee that you will take urgent steps to address this poor treatment meted to our passengers and then also to rectify the deserving kilo thing to our passengers.”

Responding to this, Mrs Dapaah said: “This same problem was handled in Nigeria differently. They signed a petition to the airline and they succeeded in getting more kilos when they were travelling. So that is one option.”

“The other option is to break the monopoly of the British Airways flights. I am not against carriers coming in, but I think some airfares are outrageously high and because we don’t have any direct flight to the UK, they (British Airways) have the monopoly, so I believe the competition that can come in can take care of the lowering of fares.

“With regards to what happens in Heathrow, it is a bit beyond me or the ministry in the sense that once you are out of our Flight Information Region (FIR) and beyond the shores of Africa, I don’t know how it is going to pan out, so I will do some more enquiries and see what we can do about it. If they had the problems here at Kotoka, I can assure you within a week or two I would have a meeting on it, but in Heathrow, I don’t know the locus to travelling all the way there to deal with that issue but we will have a look at it.”

Source: Class FM

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