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KQ resumes domestic flights on ease of Covid-19 restrictions

In Summary
  • Mid last year, it projected a Sh70 billion revenue loss from the pandemic and pleaded with shareholders for capital injections.
  • The president had zoned Nairobi, Kiambu, Nakuru, Kajiado and Machakos
KQ plane departs from JKIA.
KQ plane departs from JKIA.
Image: FILE

Kenya Airways (KQ) will resume its domestic flights yesterday after President Uhuru Kenyatta lifted a month-long travel ban in five zoned areas.

The president had locked Nairobi, Kiambu, Nakuru, Kajiado and Machakos days to Easter festivities to curb further spread of Covid-19 arising from inter-county movements after the transmission rate more than tripled in March compared to January and February.

This was the second time in a span of less than a year the airline and its subsidiary, Jambo Jet was forced to halt activities due to Covid-19.           

In a media statement, the airline said it will fly two times daily to the coastal city of Mombasa and once daily to the lakeside city of Kisumu as it continues to review the option of increasing frequencies as demand picks.

“KQ continues to work closely with the Government of Kenya through the Ministry of Health and Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) to enforce safety measures and protocols. The airline’s utmost priority remains the health and safety of the passengers, crew, and staff,” the airline said in a statement.

All passengers and airport users are still required to strictly observe the safety measures in place to ensure the safety of all airport users.

KQ has advised that passengers familiariSe themselves with the health protocols in place including wearing face masks throughout the journey and making use of the sanitizer stations.

On March 23, 2021, Kenya Airways reported a near three times loss expansion to Sh36.2 billion in the year ended December 31, 2020, the highest loss ever reported in the country by a listed entity.

The loss was attributed to Sh13 billion a year earlier is largely attributable to the collapse of its operations across 2020 on the back of Covid-19 related disruptions.

The national carrier’s revenues in the year slumped by 59 per cent to just Sh52.8 billion from a higher Sh128.3 billion in 2019.

This is as passenger revenues sunk by Sh69.9 billion in the period following the grounding of flights between April and August last year.

The total number of passengers carried in the period, for instance, fell to 1.8 million individuals in contrast to 5.2 million in the preceding year.

Other hits to revenues included Sh864 million in handling services and a Sh5.1 billion wipeout in other revenues.

Mid last year, the airline said it projects to suffer Sh70 billion revenue loss from the pandemic and pleaded with shareholders for capital injections.

So far, the National Treasury has pumped Sh10 billion in the firm to support Covid-19 recovery.