Airline's access to JKIA restricted amid security probe

The activities are alleged to have occured at the JKIA. FILE PHOTO
The activities are alleged to have occured at the JKIA. FILE PHOTO 

The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) has temporarily restricted airside access to a local cargo carrier's facility at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) amid a probe into alleged security breaches at the country's largest airport.

Jetways Aviation is facing investigation by security agencies as the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) also announced Wednesday that it has withdrawn the airline's certificate until the matter is resolved.

The move by the State agency and aviation sector regulator is meant to allow investigation into claims of illegal activity currently ongoing at the airline's JKIA premises.

“It has come to the notice of security services at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport that allegations of illegal and irregular activities are ongoing in a premises operated by Jetways Aviation at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. On the basis of these serious allegations Kenya Airports Authority has temporarily closed airside access to the Jetway facility, to allow the security agencies to further investigate,” said KAA in a statement Tuesday.

The Authority, however, did not specify the nature of the illegal activities.

The airside is the part of an airport that involves arrival and departure of aircraft, and is usually past the passport and customs control.

Withholds certificate

"KCAA has withheld the Regulated Agent Certificate until investigations are complete and operator found not to be in breach of security protocols. Should there be a violation, KCAA will take further punitive action against the operator and agent," the regulator's director general Gilbert Kibe said in a statement Wednesday.

According to KCAA, Jetways is licenced as a cargo airline and mail courier. It operates from JKIA's cargo terminal.

It had been operating from Kenya Airways' #ticker:KQ cargo facility until it was granted its own certification.

Jetways has been running charter flights across East and Central Africa.