Avi­a­tion body seeks clar­i­fi­ca­tion from Dy­namic on ticket re­funds

Stabroek News - - REGIONAL NEWS -

In light of Dy­namic In­ter­na­tional Air­ways re­as­sur­ing cus­tomers that they would have their money re­funded on un­used tick­ets, the Guyana Civil Avi­a­tion Author­ity (GCAA) says they have writ­ten the com­pany for clar­i­fi­ca­tion and are await­ing a re­sponse.

On Mon­day, the com­pany’s CEO Ray Lawlor, had con­firmed that the com­pany would be pulling out of the Guyanese mar­ket and would no longer be of­fer­ing flights from Guyana to New York, which it had pro­vided since 2014. Lawlor as­sured that cus­tomers who had pur­chased tick­ets for any date beyond Oc­to­ber 3 will be re­im­bursed. How­ever, he could not give a time frame for when cus­tomers could ex­pect their re­funds.

Dy­namic’s lo­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tive, Gerry Gou­veia, CEO of Ro­raima Air­ways Lim­ited, had also ex­plained that there is no spe­cific date when cus­tomers could ex­pect their money back since doc­u­ments would have to be pro­cessed.

Speak­ing to Stabroek News on Wed­nes­day, Sa­heed Su­la­man, the act­ing head of GCAA, said that the air­line had writ­ten to GCAA four days ago.

“They sent us a mis­sive ad­vis­ing us and re­as­sur­ing us that all pas­sen­gers who were sched­uled to use their ser­vices af­ter Oc­to­ber 3, would be is­sued a re­fund. Since re­ceiv­ing their mis­sive we have com­mu­ni­cated back to them that we need fur­ther clar­i­fi­ca­tion,” Su­la­man said, while adding that they have not re­ceived any re­sponse from the com­pany as yet.

Stabroek News had ear­lier re­ported that air­line had signed a bond of US$200,000 with the Min­istry of Pub­lic In­fra­struc­ture.

While there are no reg­u­la­tions stip­u­lat­ing a time frame for the air­line to re­fund pas­sen­gers, in the event of the com­pany tak­ing too long, the Min­istry has an op­tion to tap into the bond and re­pay the cus­tomers.

How­ever, the Min­istry would have to as­sign staff to ver­ify the cus­tomers’ doc­u­ments, which have to be used to prove that they pos­sess un­used tick­ets af­ter the spec­i­fied cut-off date.

“Cus­tomers would then have to sub­mit their doc­u­ments and the Min­istry would ap­point staff to look at those claims and then give them the green­light or not,” a source from the Min­istry said.

Once the air­line has failed to re­im­burse their cus­tomers, the Min­istry would have to is­sue an ad­vi­sory with dates for the clients to sub­mit their claims, and then the Min­istry would have to ac­cess the bond to fa­cil­i­tate the re­im­burse­ments.

Stabroek News un­der­stands

that the pro­cess­ing of the doc­u­ments to re­fund cus­tomers is oft times te­dious and dif­fi­cult, since some cus­tomers would have paid via credit or debit cards, and as such, the air­line would then have to ver­ify with the fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions that the trans­ac­tions had been made.

In July this year, Dy­namic filed for bankruptcy and a state­ment had ex­plained that a vol­un­tary Chap­ter 11 had been filed with the United States Bankruptcy Court in the Mid­dle District of North Carolina, Greens­boro Di­vi­sion. The de­ci­sion to file for bankruptcy fol­lowed lit­i­ga­tion re­sult­ing from Hajj flights Dy­namic Air­ways had op­er­ated in 2014 for Air In­dia, as well as, the en­try of a judg­ment in the United States District Court for the Mid­dle District of North Carolina af­firm­ing an ar­bi­tra­tion award against Dy­namic, is­sued by the Cana­dian Ar­bi­tra­tion As­so­ci­a­tion in April 2017.

Sub­se­quently, Dy­namic was found to be in breach of the con­tract for fail­ing to pay com­mis­sions to BKP En­ter­prises in con­nec­tion with the Hajj flights and was fined US$120,000 by the United States Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion for fail­ure to promptly no­tify pas­sen­gers of flight can­cel­la­tions, which vi­o­lated a cease and de­sist pro­vi­sion which had been made in March, 2016.

Sa­heed Su­la­man

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