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AWA’s ‘Discriminatory’ Conduct “Unacceptable” – Otiko

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The Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Otiko Afisa Djaba, has condemned Africa World Airlines (AWA) for preventing Rita Kriba, a person with disability (PWD), from boarding one of their flights from Accra to Kumasi.

Ms Djaba said she could not comprehend how such incidents could be happening in modern times.

She, however, apologised on behalf of the company, as she indicated that the matter will be addressed appropriately.

“Can’t we keep the crutches in the luggage compartment? Can’t we keep the crutches where the air hostesses stand? The planes should be compliant for persons with disability, and today, Ghana, after 61 years can deny a person with disability from getting on board because they have nowhere to keep her crutches?

“I apologise on behalf of the airline, I apologise on behalf of Civil Aviation and I apologise on my personal behalf as a Ghanaian. This is unacceptable,” Ms Djaba said on Monday, 7 May 2018.

The incident happened on Saturday, 5 May 2018, at the Kotoka International Airport.

Ms Kriba missed her flight as all attempts to convince the staff to allow her board the plane proved futile.

She has hinted at filing a suit against the company for their discriminatory policy.

Speaking to Class News, Ms Kriba said she is ready to fight the company to end the injustice meted out to persons with disability.

She said: “I felt bad because I was supposed to go to Kumasi and meet some people for a meeting. What if it was an emergency? Because I’m a person with disability, can’t I board a plane? I’m ready to take them to court because it’s against my fundamental human rights.

“I’m in Ghana, I’m in my own country, I have the right to move from wherever I want to move from… Whatever I need to do to get that right thing done I’ll do it because it’s my human right. I’m a citizen of Ghana and I need to enjoy any other privilege like any other person despite my disability.

“I’ll go to every length to get this thing solved because I don’t want it to happen to the next person with crutches, I don’t want it to happen again to a person with disability. It is time we stopped these things, we are all human beings. I have the right to pick a flight to wherever I want to go.”

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