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Airports agency delays public talks on proposed JKIA takeover

Kenya Airways
Kenya Airways will form a special unit to run the facility. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) has postponed public engagements on Kenya Airways’ #ticker:KQ intention to manage operations at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), citing the need to resolve logistical issues that have arisen just days before it was set to start.

The Authority in a notice on Thursday said stakeholder and public engagement regarding the Privately Initiated Investment Proposal (PIIP) by the national carrier, which has only been done so far in Kisumu, will now take place at a later date.

The move also comes just a day after the Kenya Aviation Workers Union (Kawu) threatened to go on strike in the next one week claiming that taking over the country’s main airport would render them jobless.

The engagement sessions were scheduled to take place in Eldoret, Mombasa, Wajir, Lodwar and Nairobi starting Monday (February 4) through to February 11. “The engagement sessions that were to be held as from the February 4, 2019, have been postponed. We will inform you of the new dates and venues,” said the KAA notice.

The State agency told Business Daily it postponed the engagements after realising the need to review logistics such as venue bookings and stakeholder participation.

Kenya Airways has proposed the formation of a subsidiary to manage the JKIA operations for 30 years.

KQ’s plan includes the creation a special purpose vehicle to operate, maintain and develop the facility.

Should the airline have its way, KQ will merge with the KAA in a plan to turn around its business and cement Nairobi’s status as a regional transport hub.

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