Mr Fani-Kayode wants British airlines to stop being rude to Nigerian customers! Are you kidding me? We always complain that we're being treated like dirt by the airlines. There was a time I was convinced that we didn't just get the worst service, but also the worst aircraft. But you know what? If we behave like cattle, we can only expect to be treated like cattle. Nigerians deserve every electric prod, every scolding, every mistreatment they receive at airports.
No doubt, the enlightened ones will carp on about how they're civilised and they shouldn't be treated badly simply because their compatriots are acting like prats. Anyone who's ever travelled to Nigeria knows the drill. Passengers don't wait until Nigeria to "behave like Nigerians", they flip mode at Heathrow Terminal 3. The simple matter of weighing luggage becomes akin to buying £10 worth of cow leg - put a bit more, take off some, shave a bit on the side. Because you're going to Nigeria, people suddenly start claiming that you're related to them, and could you please take this to my grandfather in Adamwa. They meet you at the airport with a small fridge stuffed with Primark clothes and Tesco plastic bags.
Then you go to counter and start pleading with them to allow you carry two pieces of luggage weighing 38kg each for free, when the allowance is and has always been 32kg. You're one person. The heavily made up woman behind the till smiles through the ordeal. Then she realises she has to deal with nearly 300 people with similarly outrageous claims. There are people arguing about who arrived first and, "madam, lemme just pass through this side". Which Nigerian in the UK calls another Nigerian "madam"?
If the plane - by some miracle - is exactly on time, the air stewards have to contend with a babelic cacophony of loud languages. And then there is the fisticuffs. I remember a fight nearly breaking once on a transit flight at the airport in Accra, shortly before taking off for Lagos. "I will beat you here, this is not Europe oh!" The passengers land at their final destination, and before the planes stops taxiing, before the lights saying "keep seat belts fastened" are switched off, people are up and about and getting their luggage out. And Mr Fani-Kayode wants BA and Virgin to be polite to this lot?
People who work in airlines tend to be the most patient of people. It takes a lot to push an airline employee to the limit. If you rub someone up the wrong way at 30,000ft, the consequences could be dire. It's good that our minister of aviation is finally taking an interest in passenger welfare, even though I have this silly idea that keeping them alive is slightly more important.
These BA and Virgin employees are a product of Nigerian influence. They probably now have the ability to "flip mode" when in a Nigerian environment. Believe me, they don't treat other African airlines as badly as they do Nigeria. We should do unto Virgin and British Airways, as we would have them do unto us.