Sunday, December 20, 2020 1:46 pm
By Akin Kuponiyi
The chairman of Nigerian Bar Association Epe branch, Barrister Ademola Abiodun Koko, his wife Dr (Mrs) Tolulope Olubowale Koko and two children, Mr Adeleke Joshua Koko, Miss Temiloluwa Elizabeth Koko have slammed €15,000 suit on British Airways over an alleged breach of contract.
In a statement of claim filed before a Federal high court sitting in Lagos south West Nigeria, by Barrister Abiodun Koko, for himself and other plaintiffs, he averred that they are family of four traveling to United States to celebrate the 50th birthday of his wife sometimes in May,2019.
The plaintiffs aver that in pursuance of their intention to travel, secured personal tickets for each of the plaintiffs from the company of the defendant which was to depart on 21st of May,2019 and return on the 5th of June,2019 respectively.
The Plaintiffs’ to fly from Lagos to London and finally to arrive at Washington in the United States, while return flight was scheduled to move from Washington to London and finally arrive in Lagos.
However the plaintiffs on commencing on the return flight departed Washington Dulles Airport, United States with British airways aircraft BA216 on the 4th of June,2019 at 6:30 P M and got to London Heathrow airport in the morning of 5th of June,2019.
The flight itinerary took a dip for the worse at this point and the plaintiffs were further delayed for three hours as the plane which was originally meant to move to Lagos from London by 11:20 am was further delayed till 2:40 p m.
As a result of the above stated facts, the plaintiffs suffered untold hardship.
The plaintiffs averred further that the delay was as a result of the total negligence by the defendant,and in admission of their negligence the defendants distributed an insulting palliative of five pounds refreshment voucher to appease the them, but they never used the voucher as they considered it to be an insult. Besides, the defendant never apologised and was unconcerned about the plight of the passengers.
The Plaintiffs wrote a letter to the defendant both in Nigeria and United Kingdom.
The defendant in response to the letter admitted to compensation in the sum of €1,200,but deliberately refused to pay same.
Consequently, the plaintiffs’ claim against the defendant are as follows:
Compensation in the sum of £2,120
Compensation in the sum of €1,200 admitted,
The sum of £1,750 as special damages.
General damages in the sum of £10,000 against the defendant for its negligence and breach of contract
The sum of N500,000 against the defendant as cost of this legal action.
However,in a statement of defence filed before the court by a Lagos lawyer, Tayo Laleye, the British Airways stated that it investigated the claim of the plaintiffs and though found the delay to its flight service was caused by unforeseen flight safety shortcomings, the defendant,nevertheless,and on goodwill basis did offer the Plaintiffs compensation in the sum of€1,200,Euros. That the compensation is not an admission of guilt, but purely on goodwill basis,while specific instruction were issued to plaintiffs on how to claim the compensation,but no time frames were specified for such payment.
Whereof the defendant denied all the reliefs sought by the plaintiffs and urged the court to dismiss the suit.
Meanwhile, the presiding Judge, Oluremi Oguntoyinbo has adjourned the suit till 24th of April, 2021 for hearing