Woman refused boarding on a flight to Tamale on grounds that she is disabled

A physically challenged intern of SEND-Ghana was refused boarding on an Africa World Airlines (AWA) flight to Tamale on grounds that she is disabled.

The Mandela-Washington Fellow Ndifreke Andrews-Essien has been assigned to the Salaga office of SEND-Ghana but upon arrival in Ghana from Nigeria Tuesday, she got stranded at the Kotoka International Airport because the domestic airline said its rules and regulations do not permit them to take on board persons with disability, especially those who are wheel-chair bound.

The Nigerian got to Ghana on Tuesday, June 2 via Arik Air from Port Harcourt to Lagos.

SEND-Ghana purchased Africa World Airlines ticket for her to travel to Tamale where she will continue to Salaga.

To her surprise, she was denied the right to board the aircraft because she is physically challenged.

The chief executive officer of SEND-Ghana, Siapha Kamara, has described the decision as gross discrimination against persons with disability.

According to Kamara, domestic airlines must give real meaning to the Disability Act of Ghana and other internationally accepted aviation policies.

Kamara told Radio Ghana the action of the domestic airlines is a gross violation of the rights of the victim.


It will be recalled that the Ghana Society of the Physically Disabled (GSPD) has sued three domestic airlines Antrak Air, Starbow Airlines and Africa World Airlines for discriminating against persons with disabilities by way of refusing to sell flight tickets to them.

GSPD has also sued the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority and wants the court, in their case, to restrain them from overlooking, and or refusing to ensure that the other respondents comply with Section 28 (1) of the Persons with Disability Act, 2006 (Act 715).

Section 28 (1) of Act 715 states that: “The Civil Aviation Authority and any other authority responsible for the management of a port shall provide facilities that will aid the movement of a person with disability at the port.”