KCAA: Aid, passenger flights to Somalia unaffected by Miraa ban

September 10, 2016 11:30 am
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Somalia announced Monday that it had banned miraa imports from Kenya, warning that "any violation on Somali airspace and disregard of the notice will have equal consequences."/FILE
Somalia announced Monday that it had banned miraa imports from Kenya, warning that “any violation on Somali airspace and disregard of the notice will have equal consequences.”/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 10 — The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority says the recent ban on Miraa Flights by the Somali Civil Aviation and Meteorology Authority does not affect commercial and other humanitarian flights.

The Authority says all other flights that include, Diplomatic, Non-Governmental Organisations’ missions and Passenger Services, are not affected by the notice.

“KCAA is already engaging its Somalia counterpart to re-consider the ban as it may have adverse implication on livelihood of affected harvesters,” the Authority Communications Manager Salim Bakari said in a statement.

The Somali government suspended all flights transporting the commodity from Kenya to Mogadishu on September 6, 2016.

Somalia President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said the trade and consumption of the stimulant had a devastating impact on Somalis and must be banned.

On Friday, the Government Spokesman Eric Kiraithe said the government is engaging the Somalia government on the matter that is seen to carry severe social economic implications for many farmers.

“Our Head of State is also seized of the matter,” said Kiraithe. “As a country, we were surprised by the ban, we did not expect it, but we are now working towards a diplomatic solution,” he stated.

The Kenya Miraa Farmers and Traders Association has appealed to the government to urgently step in and open up the only market that was remaining after the UK issued a similar ban.

Dave Muthuri, the Chairman of the Kenya Miraa Farmers and Traders Association on Tuesday said more than 10 tonnes of khat that was ready for export was stuck in Meru and Nairobi.

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