KQ pilots call off strike

By Caroline Kago/Claire Wanja

Kenya Airways pilots have called off their strike after reaching an agreement that will see management changes effected immediately.

This saw the exit of the airline’s human resource director bringing to an end a day of heavy revenue losses for KQ occasioned by cancellations of over 20 flights.

According to a statement to the newsroom, all flights scheduled for Friday morning, with the exception of KQ 526 to Yaoundé, Cameroon which was cancelled for operational reasons, have departed.

The rest of Friday’s scheduled flights are crewed for on time departure.

For the last three years Kenya airways has been facing its own fair share of challenges.

It has sunk dip into huge financial losses partly blamed on gross mismanagement and expensive ticketing.

The national carrier has been trying to navigate its way from the debt pit to regain its glory as the Pride of Africa.

KQ pilots under their umbrella body Kenya Airline Pilots Association issued a notice threatening to strike.

The pilots wanted to use the industrial strike to force out KQ chief executive Mbuvi Ngunze citing him the man behind the woes facing the airline.

They also wanted to compel the airline to review its 20-year-old deal with KLM in which the latter has a bigger say on the national carrier.

And though the court had stopped the strike, thousands of passengers using Kenya airways flights were last night stranded for over 8 hours after KQ pilots made good their threat to down their tools.

This forced KQ to cancel more than 20 flights leading to a massive revenue loss.

Kenya airways pilots have now called off their strike bringing to an end a day of heavy revenue losses for KQ occasioned by cancellations of over 20 flights.

In statement sent to the newsroom the pilots called off their strike following a day-long crisis meeting with the Transport cabinet secretary James Macharia and KQ chairman Dennis Awori after which it was announced the airline’s human resource director had exited the company.

In the statement Kalpa says “We would like to notify all stakeholders of Kenya Airways and Kenyans at large, that it has called off the pilots’ strike, which took effect from 12hr00 today”Capt. Paul Gichinga Secretary General Kenya Airline Pilots Association said in a statement.

Meanwhile, KQ has announced that two of its directors had opted for leave of absence in order to progress on-going consultations with Kenya Airline Pilot Association (KALPA).

In a statement issued by Kenya Airways Friday, Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Mbuvi Ngunze said the two are Director Corporate Quality, Safety, Security and Environment Alex Avedi and Director, Flights Operations, Capt. Paul Mwangi.

Mr Ngunze further stated that Human Resources Director, Alban Mwendar had earlier this month resigned but was asked by the Board to stay on to oversee the staff rationalisation programme that was announced on 31st March 2016.

The CEO affirmed that operations had returned to normalcy since this morning with all flights scheduled crewed and ready for departure




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