Travel Alert: Ethiopian Airlines by Fisayo Soyombo

Dear friends,

This may be useful for you or for someone you know ‘who knows someone who knows someone’ planning to travel this Yuletide. PLEASE STEER CLEAR OF ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES, unless you or your loved one will not check any luggage in. 

Whenever you board an Ethiopian Airlines flight, your check-in luggage isn’t safe. This advisory is to save you the heartbreak of long travels to your loved ones without the Yuletide gifts and other belongings you spent long hours and valuable cash purchasing. 

An expected observation is, but Ethiopian Airlines is not the only unsafe airline for both passenger and luggage. Absolutely true, but I’ll tell you the complications with Ethiopian Airlines.

By aviation rules, standard international airports ought to have a CCTV camera taping the movement of luggage at the airport from point of check-in to point of loading onto the aircraft. The contents of this camera are forbidden to be deleted within the first two months of filming. This is to ensure that mysteries such as luggage theft are resolved by simple recourse to the CCTV camera. 

By my experience, it is either Ethiopian Airlines detests to demand for the CCTV footage from airport authorities or it just cannot be bothered if airports delete the CCTV contents within a few days or weeks. Therefore, flying Ethiopian Airlines means there is no retribution for the offender should you become a victim of luggage theft/damage.

To worsen your predicament, Ethiopian Airlines officials (in cahoots with NAHCO staff) will either find a way to prevent you from registering a formal complaint or evade one if you manage to make it. If you’re able to make some noise about the injustice in the media, Ethiopian Airlines official will arrive at your office ahead of you the following day, promising heaven and earth. But as soon as the media tempest thaws, they will become evasive in subsequent conversations.

So, while I prepare to graduate to the next stage of forcing justice out of Ethiopian Airlines for myself over my stolen property (and for all others whose complaints I have taken down), I thought to issue this advisory to unsuspecting, prospective Ethiopian Airlines clients.

Chicken or Turkey have I not to give you this Christmas, but I can help you avert the kind of heartache I’ve been dealing with this past month. Do avoid Ethiopian Airlines in your interest.

Fisayo Soyombo is an accomplished investigative journalist who has won many local and foreign awards,  including The Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Reporting which he has won several times. This article appeared on his Facebook Timeline. 

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