by Tolu Orekoya
The June 3, 2012 Dana Air crash that killed all passengers on board and more on the ground as it crashed into a three-storey building in the densely populated Iju suburb of Lagos is still causing turmoil on the ground, a month after the crash.
The survivors on the ground lost their homes and possessions after the plane ploughed into the block of flats and destroyed some of the surrounding buildings, including three other residential properties. In all 38 people have been left without a place to live.
Yet these survivors have turned down a partial offer of funds from the airline, meant to act as “interim compensation” while the full extent of the damage was being assessed by insurance investigators.
Dana on the other hand says it offered the displaced crash victims alternative accommodation and the “interim compensation” was only one of a series of steps to make restitution to those affected by the disaster.
According to Toni Usidemen, Dana’s Head of Communications, “We are here in honour of that decision taken and we have just presented cheques for accommodation to them. This is by no means the compensation in a situation like this. Our insurance company are working out the extent of damage and adequate insurance would be paid. This is just an effort to give interim relief before the actual comprehensive compensation, a temporary relief effort.”
As the number of dead on the ground has yet to be fully quantified, the relatives of deceased of the ground have come forward naming their relatives and according to their lawyer Gbenga Oguntade, not enough is being done by Dana Air to address all their issues.
According to the lawyer, “One of the dead victims who went to the house on 7 Olaniyi Street to watch a football on that Sunday was not included in the list of the dead victims. As I’m speaking with you I have about ten clients that have no roof over their heads. If they decamp them now, where will they go? Are they sending them to go and be sleeping under the bridge?”
He went on to say, “Insurance package covers all that. We are not saying that they are responsible to the whole world. In the immediate vicinity where the incident happened so many roofs were destroyed.”
Usidemen of Dana responded to the situation by saying that they Dana was aware of the many victims and Dana would compensate them all “adequately”.