By: Kaya 959 News
Stephen Mokoka, the man ejected off a FlySafair flight earlier this week could possibly be slapped with a ban and never be able to fly with the low cost airline again.
This week, Mokoka who is a SA long distance runner, had to be subdued and escorted off a flight after he became agitated when asked to wear a mask. The plane was leaving for Cape Town from Johannesburg on Tuesday.
In a video, which has been shared several hundred times on social media, Mokoka can be seen refusing to put his mask on.
He then turns around and shouts at the flight staff, pointing his finger in a flight attendant’s face. Passengers are then heard shouting at Mokaka to put on a mask.
A man aboard flight FA201 then stands up, places himself between Mokoka and the woman. He turns Mokoka around, grabs his hands and walks him towards the front of the plane.
— The Dominion Post (@PostDominion) March 30, 2021
Confirming the incident, FlySafair chief marketing offier, Kirby Gordon, said the altercation began minutes after the aircraft door closed.
He said a passenger reacted negatively and aggressively toward the legal requirement that he wear his mask aboard the aircraft,
“As per required protocol, the captain was immediately informed of the situation and the decision was taken to offload the individual,” Kirby said.
He said the flight deck team radioed police and the man was escorted off the aircraft once the stairs were returned to the aircraft.
“Customer experience and on-time departures are very important to us, but nothing is more important than safety. We commend our teams for following safety procedure by the book to secure the aircraft and remove the individual, and we thank those customers who assisted our team,” Gordon said.
In light of Covid-19 safety protocol, FlySafair adopted a policy of mask-wearing aboard all flights.
“We require that all staff and all passengers wear masks for the duration of their journey with us. We will provide all passengers with sanitised masks, sealed for your protection, before boarding. We ask that passengers discard this packaging in the bins provided before boarding to avoid contamination. Crew also wear masks fitted with Airlaid spunlace disposable filters to protect them and our customers,” the airline company said.
Despite the South African government’s insistence on wearing a mask, covering the mouth and nose, when people are out in public, Mokoko’s case is not an isolated incident.
In February, a woman created a stir on social media when she took off her black thong and used it to cover her mouth and nose when asked to put a mask on while shopping.
The woman had been standing in a queue at a well-known shopping outlet when she was asked by a staffer to put on a mask.
After screaming about her legal rights, the flustered woman eventually pulls down her underwear and pulls it over her face.
With the country remaining on level 1 of the national lockdown, ahead of the Easter long weekend, President Cyril Ramaphosa and health officials are still urging people to wear a mask when out and about in public.
Image courtesy of Twitter Screenshot.