Several Kenya Airways passengers will have their flights cancelled and/or rescheduled as the national carrier faces a major hitch with the maintenance of its planes. According to the loss-making airline, KQ has found it difficult to bring back into operation planes in scheduled maintenance, due to global challenges sourcing various plane components.
In particular, they attributed it to the situation in Ukraine and labour shortages in Europe and North America. The airline stated that if the challenges persisted, they would likely reduce frequencies of flights to some destinations.
“We sincerely apologise to our guests for the inconvenience but assure them of our commitment to provide the highest level of service during this time,” CEO Allan Kilavuka asserted.
To resolve the matter, the airline announced that it was working to fast track the securing of components. It stated that it was engaging its original equipment manufacturer (OEM) partners on mitigation measures.
“The aviation supply chain is highly dependent on raw materials from many countries including Russia. For example, 100% titanium used on Embraer and 35% titanium used on Boeing are sourced from Russia. With a limited inventory, airlines have had to look worldwide to find the parts they need,” KQ noted in its statement.
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“Additionally, in Europe and North America, where most airlines get their components, manufacturers are looking to ramp up production of aircraft components to overcome delivery delays. However, that is proving to be difficult because of a shortage of qualified workers. This has exacerbated the delay in supply chains and compromised the availability of components for airlines,” the company continued.
Several individuals who had booked flights on the airline took to social media to complain over the flight disruptions.
The government has been searching for strategic investors to purchase its stake in the airline, which last posted a profit a decade ago and has been surviving on taxpayer bailouts. President William Ruto has maintained that the government is open to selling its entire 48.9 percent stake in KQ.
Ruto recently held discussions with US carrier Delta Airlines over a potential buy-out.
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