British Airways, Emirates divert flights to Ghana due to poor landing equipment at MMA, thousands stranded

British Airways, Emirates divert flights to Ghana due to poor landing equipment at MMA, thousands stranded

All international flights including British Airways and Emirates bound for Lagos, Nigeria; have been diverted to Ghana following poor weather conditions; as well as complications from new equipment installation.

British Airways and Emirate Airlines are among the carriers unable to land at the Murtala Muhammed Airport in Lagos; and were instead rerouted to Ghana.
The diversions are roiling travel plans for many of their customers; according to statements issued by affected passengers.
The diversion was a result of poor weather in Lagos; as well as inadequate equipment to check visibility; according to the country’s Ministry of Aviation.
The airport is “in the process of replacing the old category 2 Instrument Landing Systems; with the newly procured category 3 system that allows for the lowest visibility landing,” said James Odaudu;¬†director of public affairs for Nigeria’s Ministry of Aviation.

Instrument Landing System (ILS) works as a signal navigation aid; that guides pilots when landing in low visibility.

The authorities at the Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA) in Lagos experienced difficulties replacing their old ILS with a new one; making it impossible for airplanes to land.

“Unfortunately, there was a malfunctioning of certain components, which; coupled with the unforeseen weather conditions; made landing at the airport difficult,” Odaudu said in the statement.
Passengers stranded at the Kotoka International Airport in the Ghana city of Accra have reacted angrily; saying it would have been easier if flights had been rerouted to Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city.
Fola Olatunji-David, a technology entrepreneur whose February 11 flight to Lagos was diverted; says British Airways has not made provisions to take them back to Nigeria after initial promises to do so.
“We landed in Accra on Tuesday night and they kept stringing us along. They kept changing the time; saying, ‘We will leave at 11 pm; we will leave at 2 pm’ but we are still here,” he said in reference to British Airways.
Olatunji-David and other passengers have been in Accra for about three days; waiting for flights back to Lagos.
British Airways has not responded to multiple requests; seeking comment.
But according to statements sent to passengers; the airline blamed poor visibility at the Lagos airport; and also promised to cover passengers hotel; internet; as well as refreshments costs.
“We regret to inform you that due to the operational constraints; we have had to cancel this flight. And we recommend that you make your own travel arrangements to Lagos; as we are unable to operate safely in the coming days,” the statement to passengers read.

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