FAAN shuts down KFC outlet in MMIA, instructed to tender apology for discriminating against Gbenga Daniel’s physically challenged son

FAAN shuts down KFC outlet in MMIA, instructed to tender apology for discriminating against Gbenga Daniel’s physically challenged son

Following a social media report by Adebola Daniel, a son to Gbenga Daniel, former governor of Ogun State, alleging discriminatory treatment he receive

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Following a social media report by Adebola Daniel, a son to Gbenga Daniel, former governor of Ogun State, alleging discriminatory treatment he received at the KFC outlet at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, has shut down the operations of the fast-food outlet.

Adebola is a Passenger with Reduced Mobility, PRM.

FAAN in a statement by the Director of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection, Mrs Obiageli Orah, stated that it was in line with Lagos State Law on People with Special Needs.

Orah stated that the management of KFC has been instructed to tender an apology to the affected PRM, just as it requested that a policy statement of non-discrimination be written and pasted at their facility’s door post before it resumes operation.

The statement reads: “In line with Lagos  State law on People with Special Needs, Part C, section 55 of  General Provisions  on Discrimination which states that, ‘A person shall not deprive another person of access to any place, vehicle or facility that members of the public are entitled to enter or use on the basis of the disability of that person’, the management of FAAN has closed the KFC facility at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos with effect from March 28, 2024.

“This is as a result of a social media report by a Passenger with Reduced Mobility, PRM, alleging discriminatory treatment he received at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.

“The MD/CEO of FAAN, Mrs Olubunmi Kuku intervened swiftly by deploying a management team comprising the Director, Public Affairs and Consumer Protection, Mrs Obiageli Orah, the Regional Manager South-West, Mr Sunday Ayodele, Ag. General Manager Public Affairs, Mrs Ijeoma Nwosu-Igbo and the International Terminal Manager, Mr Kerri, to investigate the allegation.

“It is based on the findings of the team that FAAN has shut down the KFC facility at the MMA, where the incident occurred.

“The Authority has instructed that the KFC Management should tender an unreserved apology, in writing, to the affected PRM and a policy statement of non-discrimination be written and pasted conspicuously at the door post of their facility at MMIA before it resumes operation.”

Debola taking to his X account on the day of the incidence explained that after all the necessary documentation had been concluded at the airport ahead of his Virgin Atlantic flight to London, he decided to pass the time, alongside his wife and siblings, at the KFC restaurant while waiting for the flight.

However, he was in for a shock, as the female manager at the restaurant humiliated him, saying wheelchairs and users were not permitted on the premises of the KFC. She also demanded that they leave immediately, according to Daniel.

He wrote: Years ago, after all security and immigration formalities have been completed, I would normally go to the OASIS lounge to wait for my flight. For the past 3 years, the lift to the lounge has been out of service so I’ve often found solace in other establishments, sometimes lounges, sometimes restaurants such as KFC.

“Today I chose KFC – what a colossal mistake. I entered the restaurant with 4 other travel companions, consisting of my brothers and wife. The security personnel at KFC, Samuel, greeted me by name as I’ve been there multiple times. Just as we were about to sit, the lady at the till – who was apparently the manager – called out loudly, ‘No wheelchairs allowed.’

“Our group paused in confusion, before my brother, Taiwo, asked what she meant. She refused to listen to reason and stood her ground that at the KFC, Murtala Muhammed branch, wheelchairs and wheelchair users of all shapes and sizes were not permitted on the premises and we should leave immediately.“

Daniel said that despite efforts from other people at the restaurant to wade into the situation, the lady maintained that KFC was averse to wheelchairs on its premises.

“My siblings and wife became instantly irate and proceeded to debate her position with her, ultimately cumulating in raised voices and strong verbal protests. If there’s one thing, I hate more than anything in this life is to create a scene. I detest it. I do not like to draw attention to myself and as such I began pleading with my people that we should just leave,” said Daniel.

“My wife took some video footage, and my brothers took some pictures. There were at least 5 other witnesses at the scene, who tried to intervene as things unfolded. Eventually, our party departed to another lounge upset and quite frankly pissed off.

“Normally I would let these things slide but not today. When calmer heads prevailed, my wife and brother – Mayowa – went back and under the guise of buying some food and while audio recording, she questioned the lady again and the lady reiterated her position that the business does not allow wheelchairs into their premises.”

The manager, according to Daniel, mentioned that KFC was strict about its ‘no wheelchairs allowed’ rule.

“She stated that although she recently just transferred to that branch, it is something that has been drummed into them. No wheelchairs allowed.

“Today, I felt less than human, like a guard dog not allowed into the house. Lonely and isolated. I will continue to escalate this exponentially until I get a reasonable resolution and there is no stopping me. You cannot treat people this way. There are approximately 27 million Nigerians living with some form of disability. That’s over 13% of the country. 1 in 6 people on the planet are disabled. You must not treat people this way.

“So my question to KFC is simple. Does this represent your approach to disabled customers, or will you be looking into this? Am I not human enough for KFC?”