Emirates, the carrier from the Middle East has justified the tying up of a Nigerian septuagenarian, Pa. David Ukesone onboard a Chicago bound flight from Dubai.
Emirates in a statement to our correspondent by its media consultant in Nigeria said that the 71-year-old passenger was restrained onboard its flight because he was “unruly and forced his way into another passenger’s seat even after biting him.”
According to the statement, the crew took the action after they discovered that the elderly man unnecessarily became more violent.
The airline accused Ukesone who was tied close to eight hours on the plane of assaulting the crew and biting another passenger on-board, stressing that he was only restrained by its crew.
The statement insisted that the airline’s cabin crew were highly trained to ensure the safety and security of its passengers, and constantly monitored Ukesone’s welfare throughout the flight.
The statement added: “Emirates can confirm that Mr. Ukesone was a passenger on flight EK235 from Dubai to Chicago on 23 January, and that he had to be restrained by cabin crew members due to unruly behaviour during the flight."
“Despite the best efforts of our crew to intervene and reason with him, Mr. Ukesone repeatedly disturbed other passengers, refused to remain in his assigned seat, and forced his way into another cabin class."
“He also assaulted crew and bit another passenger. As a consequence, he was restrained by our crew. Our cabin crew is highly trained to ensure the safety and security of our passengers, and constantly monitored Mr. Ukesone’s welfare throughout the flight. The safety and security of our passengers and crew is of the utmost importance and will not be compromised."
"Upon arrival at the airport, the passenger was handed over to the authorities in Chicago. We would like to take this opportunity to thank the other passengers on the flight for their understanding, in particular, the individuals who had assisted our crew during the flight.”
Ukesone had alleged that a flight crew bound, punched, taped his mouth shut for hours onboard a Chicago-bound flight he was taking to reunite with his family.
He said the flight was eight hours away from landing at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, before the onboard incident.