By Libya Herald reporter.
Tunis, 9 September 2017:
The Prime Minister of the Beida-based interim government, Abdullah Al-Thinni, has visited Benghazi’s reopened Benina airport today to assess how it has been working. He was accompanied by acting mayor of Benghazi Abdulrahman Elabbar.
After inspecting various facilities at the airport, including the control tower, Thinni met with senior staff to hear about the problems, including shortages of equipment, and discuss possible solutions. The airport authority reported that a number of decisions were then made by Thinni to improve the running of Benina.
While at the airport, Thinni also spoke to a number of passengers asking them about any issues they have had at the airport.
It is not known if any of them brought up the incident two days ago, or were involved in it, in which passengers on a Libyan Airlines flight to Tunis were reportedly thrown off because the plane was suddenly needed to take members of the House of Representatives to Africa Union summit in Brazzaville.
According to one of the passengers on the aborted flight, Khadija Al-Warfali, they were first delayed for three hours before finally boarding their plane. She says they were then told to get off and take an airport bus back to the terminal. There, she claims, they had to hand over their passports again and their first boarding passes and were issued with new ones. Then after a long wait they were taken to another aircraft, where they had to identify their luggage before boarding, which they then did.
After a while, though, she says they were again told to disembark and go back to the terminal. Finally at around dawn, after a lot of shouting and complaints allegedly ignored by airport staff, Al-Warfali says they were told that the flight had been cancelled and that they should go home.
The aircraft, she says she subsequently learned, had been given over to members of the HoR to fly to Congo.