By Sameer Sanusi Chiroma Yusuf

An uncle to the Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado Bayero, has written a letter of complaint to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), seeking punitive actions against Air Peace Airline for what he tagged a disrespect to the emir and the people of Kano State.

In the petition to the NCAA, the Emir’s uncle and one of his closest allies, Isa Sanusi Bayero, popularly known as Isa Pilot, said the airline delayed their Banjul to Lagos flight by over one hour and refused to allow them board their connecting flight to Kano because they arrived in Lagos 30 minutes before departure time.

Bayero said, “We, 10 of us, including His Highness Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, Sarkin Kano and four other business class passengers with additional other five economy class passengers all boarded our return Air Peace flight No. P47776 from Banjul to Lagos.

“Our departure from Banjul was scheduled for 00:10hrs (local time) on 24th February, 2022, however, we departed Banjul at 01:19hrs and we landed at Lagos at 5:45am. Our connecting flight to Kano on the same Air Peace airline was for 6:15 hrs. This gave us only 30 minutes to make our flight to Kano.”

He said he personally called the Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyeama, to inform him of the precarious situation and requested him to assist by delaying their departing flight to Kano as a mark of respect to the revered Emir of Kano.

“He flatly refused and avowed that he will not do that. I personally took this as an insult and a flagrant show of disrespect to his highness and the Kano people at large.”

He said it was very disappointing because the delay was the fault of the airline, adding that he was “aware that even with arriving international flights, departing aircrafts – local or international – are often delayed to enable arriving passengers join. Why should that be different with Air Peace Airline?”

He said despite having to check into a hotel at personal cost, the airline also requested them to pay a “No-show” fee when they wanted to rebook the next available flight of the airline which was by 7pm.

“This is an extreme case of insensitivity and callousness. In view of the foregoing, I feel strongly aggrieved and demand your kind intervention for restitution and for appropriate measures to be taken to stop this unwholesome development from happening in the future,” he added.

When contacted, a spokesman of the airline said he would get back to one of our correspondents. He had yet to do so as of the time of filing this report.

The Director-General of the NCAA, Capt. Musa Nuhu, confirmed receipt of the letter but declined further comment.

“I can only say we received the letter, we are working on it but I cannot say anything on it,” he said.

Reacting to Pince Isa Bayero’s narrative, The Chief Operating Officer, COO, of Air Peace airline, Mrs Toyin Olajide , Friday said contrary to the story making the rounds in the media that the airline disrespected the Emir of Kano and the people of Kano for not delaying 6.15am flight to Kano for the Emir, the airline’s action was to protect the image of the Emir.

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

“ In the said letter, Mr. Isa Bayero alleged that Air Peace disrespected the Emir of Kano and the people of Kano for not delaying our 6.15am flight to Kano for the Emir!”

“Rather than disrespect the revered Emir of Kano, Air Peace did everything to PROTECT THE NAME AND IMAGE OF THE EMIR FROM RIDICULE by not succumbing to what Isa Bayero wanted us to do.”

“If we had agreed to stop and delay an aircraft, already set to take-off, for another one hour only for the doors to be opened and the Emir to 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 stop and delay a fully boarded plane with doors already shut and aircraft already moving while our respected Emir and eight others in his entourage, including Isa Bayero, were still at the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos after arriving from Banjul?

“This statement is shocking to us. We want to state the true facts herein: From the telephone log evidence on the phone of our Chairman/CEO, Allen Onyema, Mr. Isa Bayero called our Chairman at about 5.52am, at a time he was still sleeping.” “From the same log, it could be seen that Isa called him again at 5.59am. This call woke him up and on seeing that it was Isa Bayero calling, he took the call”.

“Isa told our Chairman that he and the Emir of Kano had just landed the Murtala Mohammed International Airport Lagos from Banjul, Gambia and would be proceeding to Kano same morning. He told the Chairman to delay our first flight of the day, the 6:15 am Lagos-Kano flight for him and the Emir with another eight persons”.

” It was not true that our Chairman refused flatly. He rather told Mr. Isa Bayero to give him a few minutes to call the airport to find out the status of the flight. I was the one he called. To show his desire to help, he called me immediately and intimated me with the request. “

“I am the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Air Peace. I quickly called the local airport from where we carry on our day to day domestic flight operations and was told that the aircraft had since finished boarding and was almost taxiing out.”

“I quickly called Mr. Isa Bayero with this information and I expressed our desire to put him, their entourage and the Emir of Kano on our 7.00am Lagos- Abuja flight and that on landing in Abuja, we would then put him on our flight going to Kano at no cost to them. Mr. Isa Bayero refused this offer; he insisted that the already taxiing aircraft should be stopped and delayed until the Emir and the other eight persons arrive from the international airport”. “At this point, as stated earlier, Isa Bayero and the Emir of Kano had just landed at the international wing of the airport, this means they would still need to go through Immigration, get their baggage and, of course, clear with Customs before entering the morning Lagos traffic to get to the local wing of the airport. This would mean that the passengers in the plane ready to depart would have to wait in the plane for nothing less than an hour.”

“I called Isa Bayero to explain the status and also to proffer a solution, which would be a win -win for both the waiting passengers and the Emir. We decided instead to fly the Emir and his entourage on the 7am flight to Abuja and then from Abuja to Kano at no extra cost”.

“So the decision was then to fly them from Abuja to Kano still in the morning considering the next flight from Lagos to Kano was for 7: 00 pm. How this became a disrespectful action by Air Peace baffles us. ” We took this decision so as to defend the image of our highly revered Emir of Kano and not as an insult as insinuated by Isa Bayero because if passengers were delayed for an hour after boarding and ready to fly and then to see the Emir and his entourage walk in, considering the pulse of the general public lately due to the complaints of delays, it would not have done justice to the image and character of the Emir”. “After explaining this to Isa Bayero, he threatened he would incite the people of Kano against the Airline if we did not stop the flight. When I reported this statement to the Chairman, he did not believe me and insinuated that I may not have heard him right because Isa Bayero was well acquainted with him and could not have said such.”

“It is therefore to my utmost shock that we saw in the media this deliberate falsehood. It is so unfortunate that Isa Bayero will go to this extent to portray the Chairman and Air Peace in this manner.”

“The Chairman of Air Peace has the highest regard for the traditional institution as it could be recalled that The Emir of Kano had previously issued a certificate of commendation to the Chairman for his philanthropic work to the people of Kano and as such holds the office of the Emir and all traditional institutions in high esteem”.

“We are therefore appalled that this statement would be made to incite such negativity towards the Airline. We make bold to say that the Emir of Kano we know would have been offended to know that a flight already going was stopped and delayed for over one hour for him.”

“The Emir would never have supported that publication. He may not have even known our offers and our reasons given to Prince Isa Bayero. We reiterate our respects to our revered Emir of Kano,” Olajide emphasised .

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *