The row between the Emir of Kano and Air Peace deepened yesterday with Isa Bayero, cousin of Aminu Ado Bayero, Emir of Kano, giving the airline a 72-hour ultimatum to offer an apology for allegedly ‘disrespecting’ the monarch and causing a delay to his flight.
Bayero had written a letter of complaint to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), seeking punitive actions against Air Peace Airline for what he tagged “disrespect to the emir and the people of Kano State.”
But Air Peace reacted, saying that it did not disrespect the Emir of Kano as alleged in the petition.
The airline’s Chief Operating Officer, Toyin Olajide, argued that Air Peace holds the Emir of Kano in the highest regards and contrary to the insinuation that the emir was disrespected, the airline indeed protected the image of the traditional ruler “by not succumbing to what Isa Bayero wanted us to do.”
In a latest development, Bayero, who is the chief protocol officer for the Emir, said: “I am giving an ultimatum of 72 hours for Air Peace to tender an apology to the emir, first in a national daily and secondly to come down in person to the emir. We would not hesitate to go extra miles to correct the ‘misnormal’.
“The action of Air Peace is sentimental and unprofessional and we can go any length to defend and protect any act of insensitivity against our prestigious traditional institution.
“That insult is not heaped on the emir alone but on the good people of Kano and folding our hands on this could trigger something worse and more ridiculous.
“I wrote to the DG NCAA, to complain but if someone claimed my statement is inciting, well, they are entitled to their opinion. But come to think of it, inciting who? Kano people not to fly Air Peace anymore because the airline insulted their emir and refused to apologise? That I have no regret if anybody claimed or interprets my complaint that way.
“After all, Air Peace has been in business before coming to Kano and Kano people have been flying across the world without Air Peace. So if that is what he wanted, so be it, we will get there.
“I am a professional pilot. I have flown five heads of state besides being a prince of Kano, and I am a personal friend to the Chairman of Air Peace, Mr Onyema.”
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