Kenya Airways staff changes not over, says CS Macharia

June 17, 2016
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Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia says the government is working closely with the board to evaluate the entire management and have the best bosses running it/FILE
Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia says the government is working closely with the board to evaluate the entire management and have the best bosses running it/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 17 – The government says staff rationalisation at Kenya Airways (KQ) in a move to revive the airline especially at the management level may be far from over.

Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia says the government is working closely with the board to evaluate the entire management and have the best bosses running it.

“We’re reviewing the entire structure of management to make sure we have the best people running that key corporate,” Macharia said while speaking to journalists in Brussels, Belgium. “We’re changing management at all levels. This is not a secret. You’ve seen us asking people at senior levels to leave.”

Some of the heads at the national airline that have since left include the Human Resource Director Alban Mwendar who resigned in April this year and Alex Mbugua, the long serving Finance Director who sacked in January 2016.

Others include Director Corporate Quality, Safety, Security and Environment Alex Avedi and Captain Paul Mwangi who was dropped as Director for Flight Operations but remains a Kenya Airways pilot.

On bailout plans, Macharia maintains the board is also working on ways to raise funds, but in any case bailout will not come until a proper management is in place.

The government which has a 29 percent stake at KQ has supported the ongoing cost cutting activities as this would help it start on a new page once there is proper financing.

“What we’re doing is to sit with the Board of Directors to see how we can help them to raise money to restore the financial viability of the airline. We’ve come very far. If you look at the kinds of things which have been done to trim down to reduce the fat, I believe going forward you’ll see a very big impact,” the CS added.

Poor performance has been blamed on bad strategies by the management which led to KQ posting a record Sh25.7 billion loss in the 2014/2015 financial year.

African Export-Import Bank (Afrexim) last year agreed to lend KQ Sh20 billion as a bridging loan to ease its immediate cash-flow constraints, even as it seeks Sh60 billion injection in equity or debt.

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