Dana Air accident victim claims N500m compensation, accuses airline of insensitivity

By Oyise OGHENE
LAGOS: One of the victims of the June 3, 2012 Dana Air plane crash at the Iju-Ishaga area of Lagos, Pastor Daniel Omowunmi has accused the management of the airline of insensitivity towards his plight, just as he claimed N500m compensation for the damage to his properties.

Speaking to newsmen in Lagos over the weekend,
Pastor Omowunmi decried that since the unfortunate accident, which claimed at least 163 persons onboard and on ground occurred and his properties destroyed, the management of Dana Air had been dilly dallying with him.

He claimed that some of his properties, which included a 6-bedroom duplex, four-bedroom bungalow and two standard warehouses located at no. 8/10 Popoola Street, Iju-Ishaga, Lagos were completely destroyed by the crash.

He lamented that before the unfortunate accident, he and his family members were leaving in the 6-bedroom duplex while the warehouses were used for commercial purposes, adding that his staff and office occupied the 4-bedroom bungalow.

He further claimed that his four fish ponds, which were fully stocked before the crash, were completely destroyed.

He explained that following the request to that effect by the management of the airline, on the 20th June, 2012, he through his solicitor, Messrs Dele Adesina &Co forwarded a comprehensive letter of claim to the airline, but noted that since the claims were forwarded to the airline, no step had been taken to address the situation.

According to him, he divided the claims into three categories namely; property and items destroyed at N213.1m, fully stocked imported educational books at N250.5m and large quantity imported kitchen utensils for sale in Nigeria at N40m.

He stated that after the receipt of his letter of claim, a meeting was held between him and the Dana management where he was offered the sum of N500, 000, which he described as insulting and thereby rejected.

He said, “After the delivery of my letter of claim dated 20th June, 2012, the representatives of Dana Airlines, Mr. A.B Anand got in touch with me on phone and requested for a meeting. The meeting was held at my solicitor’s office on the 28th June, 2012. It was at the meeting that Mr. Anand acknowledged the receipt of my solicitor’s letter while a follow up meeting was held on the 3rd July, 2012 in the presence of the General Manager of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Dr. Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu”

“It was at this meeting that Mr. Anand offered me N500, 000 as a temporary relief. Naturally, I felt insulted by this high level of insensitivity on the part of the airline and I questioned how the N500, 000 will address the inconveniences and torture my family and I have been put into. Is it to address our homelessness or to rent a house?” he queried.

He decried that since the accident occurred, he had been squatting in church while he could no longer live up to his social and family responsibility most especially, the education of his children, which he said had been affected as he could no longer afford their school fees.

He called on President Goodluck Jonathan, the Governor of Lagos State, Barr. Babatudne Fashola and the Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Oduah to intervene in the matter and compel the management of the airline to discharge its responsibility to him under the law.

He, however, said that if the management refused to listen to his demands, he would be compelled to file a legal action against the airline.

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