There is a gale of flight delays and cancellations across the country, largely due to poor weather conditions.
Consequently, hundreds of passengers in the past few days have been stranded for long hours at various airports across the country, as airlines battled to operate under poor visibility weather.
The most affected were flights to Northern states, especially Kaduna, Kano and Ilorin, among others.
Some parts of the Southern part of the country were also affected. For instance, Air Peace cancelled its Abuja – Ibadan flight on Sunday afternoon, February 19, 2023. Similarly, Abuja – Akure flight was equally affected. Most flights scheduled to Ilorin were either delayed or cancelled outrightly.
The airline had already delayed its Kano – Lagos flight on Sunday, February 19, 2023. The flight, which was supposed to depart Kano by 11:45am to Lagos on Sunday, was shifted to 10:40pm.
The message sent to passengers on that route on Saturday evening read: “Dear Esteemed Passenger, due to bad weather in Kano, your flight schedule has changed. Hence, your 11:45 AM flight, P47423, KANO TO LAGOS for today 19th February 2023, will now depart at 10:40 PM. We honestly understand the resulting inconvenience and regret the effect of this unexpected time change on your travel plans. Please, bear with us.”
Other airlines like Air Peace, Max Air and Azman Air, which operate to northern airports, have had to either delay, divert, reschedule or cancel flights to some of their routes in the north.
The northern parts of the country and some parts of the south are currently experiencing shades of cloudy and foggy conditions, while flights to southern parts were not affected so far by the poor weather.
The bad weather condition has led to delays and cancellations of flights since Tuesday, despite the alleged investment in flight infrastructure by the Federal Government in the past five years.
The departure lounges of the Abuja, Kano and Lagos airports have been overflowing with frustrated passengers, who thronged the facilities preparatory to connecting their respective destinations only to be confronted with the poor situation.
A passenger, Peter Mirka, who was held up in Abuja, said he cannot fly to Benin in the past few days due to the weather condition of the region.
“I am stranded in Abuja because of the weather. I was supposed to have flown to Benin but no way. I am now planning to go to Asaba and then find a taxi to Benin by road,” he said.
Meanwhile, Aviation Experts have absolved the airlines stating that weather is a natural occurrence. They are of the view that delays and cancellations are part of safety measures according to the rules of the business.