Nigerians in diaspora still suffer racism attacks. A certain Nigerian woman, one Queen Obioma filed a suit against United Airlines, a US airline recently after she and her children were removed from the plane following complaints from another passenger.
The passenger complained he could not fly with her because of her body odour. According to Chicago Tribune, the incident happened in 2016 when Obioma and her two children were boarding a flight from Houston to San Francisco. The trio were on their second leg of a three-flight journey to Ontario, Canada from Lagos.
According to the woman, the male passenger had taken the seat she was initially assigned to in the business-class cabin. When the passenger refused to give up the seat, Obioma was asked to sit elsewhere. A few minutes later, Obioma went to use the bathroom before the plane took off. On her way back, the same passenger reportedly blocked her from accessing her seat. She said “excuse me” thrice but when the passenger refused, Obioma squeezed her way past him. Before she could sit, a crew member told Obioma to leave the plane and that the pilot had specifically asked that she be removed from the plane because the male passenger complained that he could not fly with her because of her pungent smell.
According to complaint filed by Obioma’s lawyer in Houston, “At that point Ms. Obioma was lost, confused and disoriented. Her mind went blank and she was utterly befuddled.” Obioma explained that her children had important appointments related to school that they could not miss but she was refused re-entry into the plane. “Ms. Obioma watched her minor children marched out of the aircraft like criminals, confused and perplexed … She sobbed uncontrollably for a long time.” It took five hours before Obioma and her children finally board another plane but the delay affected the scheduled appointment she had and she incurred more expenses. According to the lawsuit filed against the airline, “United Airlines discriminated against Obioma and her children during the incident on March 4, 2016 at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston because they were black.”
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