When corruption is Elevated: The Emir of Kano Petitions Air Peace for Disrespecting him, Because They Refused To Delay a Flight For His Sake

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    When a Nation is besieged by corruption, so much so that it terribly eats into the system, the appropriate thing would be to fight it. But when those at the helm of affairs, who are responsible for fighting it, are also corrupt, then you wonder if there’s any hope.

    Moreso, you cannot use inadequacies to fight inadequacies – it will be futile. That is the state of the Nigerian system, where the law only favours a selected few, leaving the rest to whatever fate has in stock for them. 

    Certain things can only happen in a system where corruption is elevated.

    On Saturday, the news had it that the Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado-Bayero, on that day, demanded an apology from Air Peace following a misunderstanding overflight schedule.

    It was said that the monarch’s flight from Banjul, The Gambia, had been delayed by the airline, over adjustment in the flight schedule. This was made public by the Emir’s Chief Protocol Officer, Isah Bayero, who addressed journalists in Kano and had asked Air Peace to apologize to the monarch within 72hours or risk losing passengers in the state.

    His consequent lines went ahead to assert that the monarch was intentionally disrespected by the management of the Airline, even though it had been made known that they were offered an alternative flight.’s

    However horrible, Air Peace had earlier dismissed the claims on the monarch’s disrespect.

    The Chief Operating Officer of the Airline, Mrs . Toyin Olajide released a statement that, reaffirmed its respect for the monarch:

     “Our attention has been drawn to a written complaint by one Isa Bayero to the DG of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) against Air Peace and which is published in the public domain.

    In the complaint, Mr. Isa Bayero alleged that Air Peace disrespected the Emir of Kano and the people of Kano by not delaying the Airline’s 6:15 a.m. flight to Kano for the Emir! Rather than disrespect the revered Emir of Kano, Air Peace did all that it could to protect the name and image of the emir from ridicule by not succumbing to what Isa Bayero demanded of the airline.

    If the Airline had agreed to halt and delay an aircraft already set to go – for another one hour – only for the door to be opened and the Emir and his entourage walk in, there would have been a very serious uproar in the media nationwide against both the airline and the Emir.

    This we pleaded with Isa Bayero to understand, but he refused to accept.

    How could Isa Bayero want the management of Air Peace to halt and delay a fully boarded aircraft with doors shut and aircraft already moving, while our respected Emir and eight others in his entourage, including Isa Bayero, were still when I reported this statement to the Chairman, he did not believe me and insinuated that I might not have heard him rightly, because Isa Bayero was well acquainted with him and could not have said such.”

    Such an ugly incident only takes place when certain persons like the Emir’s protocol officer, have assumed that “the other passengers don’t matter.”  This is only possible in a lawless society!

    I remember travelling to Lagos with ABC Transport. We had booked 7 am luxury bus, and most people were available. When we entered the Express of the city of Aba, our bus stopped. It was said that a passenger was coming with a cab to meet up with us.  He had boarded the ticket, and since we just entered the federal highway, we were begged to wait for him.

    I knew how uneasy a lot of people were, and certain persons kept screaming at the driver who was only obeying instructions from the office. 

    When the passenger finally arrived, he kept saying sorry at intervals while on the journey, until people stopped murmuring. He knew it wasn’t a ‘right’ for us to wait for him. He considered it a privilege and saw it that he was lucky not to have been told to wait at the terminal for the next bus.

    It hurts to see that the monarch’s representative considered it a right. Pleasing them and displeasing others, was what he expected – mindset of people in a system that has no regard for the human rights of a greater percentage of its populace.

    Then you ask the question: Why the guts?

    And the answer becomes clear: Because he can always have it his way.

    One won’t even think of this in saner climes because you’re already seeing how odd it would appear. But in a society where the highly placed has little or no regard for others, that terrible mindset will always say:

    “These people are worthless.”

    Written by: Edward Amah

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