•Associated Airlines’ insurers arrive Nigeria
Chinedu Eze and Chiemelie Ezeobi
The last two male survivors of last week's Associated Airlines’ plane crash in Lagos, the son of the late former Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Agagu, Feyi and Femi Akinsanya, have been flown abroad for proper medical treatment, THISDAY has learnt.
This came as the insurers of ill-fated aircraft with registration number 5NBJY that crashed last week Thursday arrived Nigeria yesterday to work out the formalities to compensate the victims of the accident.
The condition of the duo, who had been on admission at the BT unit of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, since the day of the crash, were said to have taken a turn for the worse, necessitating the need to fly them abroad.
The trip abroad was said to have taken all by surprise seeing that their conditions had at best been described as stable unlike that of the other survivors.
But their moves to get treatment abroad sources say, might not be unconnected with the fact that the two other male survivors, Samson Hassan and Taiwo Akintunde, had died at LASUTH on Saturday and Tuesday respectively.
A source who spoke on condition of anonymity, told THISDAY that their fears became heightened with the rate the survivors were dying in the hospital, thereby forcing the family to take a drastic decision.
As at last weekend, sources said Agagu and Akinsanya were moved because their conditions were adjudged more stable than that of other survivors-Samson Hassan, Taiwo Akintunde and Samson Toyin who were also at the ward.
But a reliable source from one of the aviation agencies who has been monitoring their treatment, said Agagu and Akinsanya were not in a any health danger anymore; that they left for medical check-up for secondary examination because they had been treated and merely wanted to get secondary examination of their health status
The source said if they were still critical they would have been airlifted by air ambulance, but they travelled on British Airways flight.
The source also said they were very lucky to have survived the crash without serious injuries that could keep them admitted for a long time.
“Those guys are lucky. It is not easy to survive that kind of crash and to come out without serious injuries. I am very, very happy about their condition,” the source said.
According to reports, the duo were expected to have travelled out on Tuesday night but it was deferred to enable the family get medical reports clearing the patients for the flight.
Having succeeded in finally getting the report, the two survivors were said to have been airlifted onboard a British Airway flight yesterday with medical personnel to tend to them throughout the duration of the flight.
This move is against the assurance given by the duo's relative, one Dapo Akinsanya, last Saturday when THISDAY visited the BT Unit of LASUTH, where the duo were transferred to from the Surgical Emergency Ward.
Meanwhile, officials of Lloyds of London, who arrived from the UK, were expected to look at the criteria for the compensation as domesticated and enshrined in the 2006 Nigeria Civil Aviation Act.
Their arrival brings to an end speculations that the aircraft did not have valid insurance cover and, therefore, was not worthy to fly.
The team, it was learnt, held a meeting with the legal firm of Yomi Oshikoya, the same legal team that handled the Dana Air accident on June 3, 2012 and would likely be appointed to undertake the compensation procedure for the relatives of the crash.
Oshikoya , it was learnt, has been appointed representative of Lloyds Underwriters from London.
The insurers and officials of Associated Aviation Limited were expected to meet today in Lagos to agree on the modalities to be adopted in handling all issues pertaining to the crash and how to engage the families of the victims.
The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) stipulates that the airline pay not less than $100,000 per passenger as compensation to family members of victims of the crash.
The airline is expected to pay to families of each cabin crew member that died in the crash one $150,000, while the family of the pilot would collect $150,000.
By international standards, the airline was required to pay the sum of $30,000 to the victims as initial payment within the first 30 days after the crash.