, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 28 – National carrier Kenya Airways faced delays and was forced to cancel flights in its network following a strike by pilots which kicked off Thursday morning.
The delays and cancellations affected 10 flights.
In a statement, Kenya Airways said it regretted the inconvenience caused to its clients, saying it is working to normalise the situation.
“Our pilot fraternity is a vital part of our business and we are working together to resolve any outstanding issues,” a statement by the airline said.
The Kenya Pilots Association (KALPA) had issued a 48-hour strike notice Tuesday, demanding the immediate resignation of the firm’s CEO Mbuvi Ngunze over alleged mismanagement.
The association, which consists of more than 400 pilots listed gross management, costly agreements signed with travel agents and sale of aircrafts at throw away prices as some of their issues all under Ngunze’s lead.
They said that the airline’s operations would be grounded if Ngunze did not leave the office by midday Thursday.
“This will not be a go-slow. It will be all tools down. If our notice lapses without our demands being met, no KQ aircraft will be airborne beginning 12pm on Thursday,” KALPA Secretary General and Captain Paul Gichinga said before the strike took off.
The strike went ahead despite assurances earlier that an agreement had been reached to call off the action.
Despites various attempts to return to its former glory since its financial crash in 2014, the airline has attracted bad blood especially at an interior level in the last 48 months including the decision to fire 600 employees beginning May in a bid to cut costs.
“We would like to assure you that as the national carrier we are committed to serving you with pride,” the airline said.