Be­sieged KQ boss set to quit of­fice by March

Mbuvi Ngunze “felt it was a nat­u­ral point in the com­pany’s evo­lu­tion to pass on the ba­ton” chair­man Michael Joseph says

The Star (Kenya) - - News Business - WEITERE MWITA @MwitaMartin

Embattled Kenya Air­ways chief ex­ec­u­tive Mbuvi Ngunze will fi­nally leave in the first quar­ter of 2017, the board an­nounced yes­ter­day. The de­ci­sion will bring to an end his five-year ca­reer at the loss-mak­ing na­tional car­rier.

“While I re­gret this de­ci­sion, I re­spect his po­si­tion. Mbuvi will stay on un­til a suc­ces­sor is found which is ex­pected to take some months,” chair­man Michael Joseph said in a state­ment yes­ter­day.

Mbuvi will have worked with KQ for over five years hav­ing joined as chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer in Septem­ber 2011, be­fore suc­ceed­ing Ti­tus Naikuni as CEO in Novem­ber 2014.

Joseph said Mbuvi “felt it was a nat­u­ral point in the com­pany’s evo­lu­tion to pass on the ba­ton”. The out­go­ing KQ boss has re­cently fallen out with pi­lots body who de­manded his ouster to­gether with former chair Den­nis Awori who left last month.

“Se­lec­tion of the next CEO will be a thought­ful process led by my­self to­gether with the board gov­er­nance and nom­i­na­tions com­mit­tee, which will fo­cus on pro­duc­ing the right out­comes to lead KQ into its next chap­ter,” Jo- seph said. The process is ex­pected to be com­pleted within the next three months. Quar­ter one of 2017 runs from Jan­uary to March.

“I have al­ready started the process to search for and iden­tify the right can­di­date with the rel­e­vant air­line ex­pe­ri­ence,” he said.

The an­nounce­ment comes barely a month af­ter former chair­man am­bas­sador Den­nis Awori left the trou­bled air­line.

The Kenya Air­line Pi­lots As­so­ci­a­tion have been call­ing for the exit of the two this year, is­su­ing two strike no­tices in seven months (April 26 and Oc­to­ber 11 ), af­ter the air­line recorded a series of loses.

/ HEZRON NJOROGE

KQ CEO Mbuvi Ngunze when he ap­peared be­fore a Se­nate Com­mit­tee at Par­lia­ment Build­ings on April 7

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