Kenya to wait longer for US di­rect flights – JKIA au­dit de­lay

The US Fed­eral Avi­a­tion Ad­min­is­tra­tion pushed the fi­nal au­dit of the JKIA to mid next month, four weeks af­ter the pro­posed time

The Star (Kenya) - - Front Page - WEIT­ERE MWITA @MwitaMartin

Kenya might get the ap­proval for di­rect flights to the United States next month, it emerged yes­ter­day.

This is af­ter the US Fed­eral Avi­a­tion Ad­min­is­tra­tion pushed the fi­nal au­dit of the Jomo Keny­atta In­ter­na­tional Air­port to mid next month, four weeks af­ter the ini­tial pro­posed time by the Kenya Civil Avi­a­tion Author­ity.

The KCAA di­rec­tor gen­eral Gil­bert Kibe yes­ter­day said the re­sults of the fi­nal FAA’s In­ter­na­tional Avi­a­tion Safety As­sess­ment au­dit will be known at the end of next month. “They were not able to come this month, but ap­proval of the fi­nal au­dit has been re­ceived,” Kibe told the Star on the phone.

“It is con­firmed that the au­dit will be in mid Novem­ber. By the end of Novem­ber, Kenya will know if it has at­tained Cat­e­gory One. “We are mak­ing ar­range­ments now for them to con­firm the ex­act date.”

This means flights could be­gin ear­li­est in De­cem­ber. The coun­try has met the thresh­old re­quired for the JKIA to be up­graded to Cat­e­gory One Sta­tus, which is a pre­req­ui­site for di­rect flights to the US.

The gov­ern­ment had been tasked to come up with a new Civil Avi­a­tion Law, which was achieved when Pres­i­dent Uhuru Keny­atta as­sented to the Civil Avi­a­tion (Amend­ment) Bill 2016 on Septem­ber 14. The coun­try has also set up a civil avi­a­tion tri­bunal as per re­quire­ments.

Fur­ther, the KCAA has eight crit­i­cal el­e­ments of safety over­sight system re­quired by the In­ter­na­tional Civil Avi­a­tion Or­gan­i­sa­tion.

The gov­ern­ment has be­gun court­ing air­lines in­ter­ested in op­er­at­ing flights be­tween the JKIA and the US, Trans­port Cab­i­net Sec­re­tary James Macharia said in an in­ter­view on Septem­ber 24. “The US has re­quested us to ask air­lines in­ter­ested in fly­ing di­rectly from Kenya to ap­ply.”


Kalpa boss Paul Gichinga and Trans­port CS James Macharia at the as­so­ci­a­tion’s meet­ing in Rubani House on April 28

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