Bad pub­lic­ity hurt­ing KQ

Business Daily (Kenya) - - EDITORIAL & OPINION - This is the kind of spat it must avoid at all costs

Na­tional car­rier Kenya Air­ways (KQ) has this week been in­volved in two sep­a­rate in­ci­dents both lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally that have the po­ten­tial to im­pact its rep­u­ta­tion. The good came from the free mar­ket­ing that the air­line got on Wed­nes­day after thou­sands of In­ter­net users in the UK tracked one of its flights for hours in a bid to mon­i­tor the dis­graced In­ter­na­tional De­vel­op­ment sec­re­tary Priti Pa­tel’s jour­ney back home.

Ms Pa­tel had been re­called home after it emerged that she had had unau­tho­rised con­tacts with Is­raelis. The bad was in KQ’S ugly fight with its for­mer Fi­nance di­rec­tor Alex Mbugua who had been re­in­stated to his for­mer job after the court found that he had been wrong­fully dis­missed two years ago. This lat­ter in­ci­dent is of most con­cern be­cause it threat­ens to erode the ef­forts be­ing made to pull the ail­ing air­line from the loss­mak­ing ter­ri­tory it cur­rently stands. As a listed pub­lic com­pany, it is in KQ’S in­ter­est to in­still con­fi­dence in in­vestors and, es­pe­cially tax­pay­ers who have in­jected bil­lions of shillings into the com­pany in sup­port of the turn­around ef­fort.

The drama around Mr Mbugua, who on Tues­day was awarded a whop­ping Sh144 mil­lion com­pen­sa­tion for un­law­ful sack­ing, not only dents the car­rier’s im­age but also brings into ques­tion its ad­her­ence to the rule of law. Even though the air­line may have had gen­uine rea­sons for its ac­tion, it was found to have failed to fol­low the laid down pro­ce­dures of ter­mi­nat­ing an em­ploy­ment con­tract. This is the kind of pub­lic spat it must avoid at all costs.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Kenya

© PressReader. All rights reserved.