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Court reverses sacking of Kenya Airways Finance Director

Former KQ Finance Director Alex Mbugua (L) with ex CEO Titus Naikuni/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 7 – The high court has reinstated former Kenya Airways Finance Director Alex Mbugua to his previous position after a legal battle with the airline.

Employment and Labour Relations Justice Monica Mbaru has found Kenya Airways failed to prove Mbugua’s culpability in the financial loss of the national carrier which at the time of his sacking had hit a record Sh26 billion.

“I find no justifiable reasons to deny the claimant primary remedy of reinstatement since the dismissal was unfair and ought not to have happened,” she ruled.

In his defense, Mbugua through lawyer John Njomo had contested the termination on grounds of pushing for a review of the KQ – KLM partnership as well as questioning suspicious irregular ticketing practices in some overseas stations including the London office.

However, the national carrier moved with speed to fire him on January 18, 2017, for alleged underperformance.

It accused him of intentionally skipping an urgent performance review meeting before the human resources committee on January 18, 2016 and termed it as insubordination.

The court had in 2016 restrained Kenya Airways from filling the position of Financial Director until the case was heard and determined.

Kenya Airways’ turnaround plan has seen a change of key top positions including the CEO and Board Chair.

In her finding, Justice Mbaru observed that Kenya Airways will benefit largely due to Mbugua’s vast knowledge in his area of work, internal systems and operations gained over the last 8 years, holding same post without any incident of indiscipline.

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