Kenya Airways will resume passenger flights on June 8, the Transport Ministry has confirmed.
On the other hand, the Kenya Airports Authority is putting in place the necessary operation manual ahead of the opening of the country’s airports for passengers.
In an interview with the Star, Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia said the airline is ready to take back to the skies.
This will however be subject to “medical protocol”, Macharia said, which the government is keen to ensure both the national carrier and KAA comply with.
“We expect KQ to fly from June 8 subject to medical protocols,” he said.
According to industry players, these include clearance by the World Health Organization (WHO) and adherence to set specifics and standards by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
Among them is spacing at check-ins, waiting bays, sanitising and neutralising of the middle seats in aircraft.
“We are supporting KQ to get back to the skies,” Macharia said.
This week, staff at JKIA were taken through a two-day pandemic preparedness training, a program of the East African Community conducted by AMREF and funded by Germany.
The Sh708.1 million programme covers eight international airports in the six EAC partner States.
It involves a wide range of staff with close contact to passengers and or their luggage, mong them airport medical service providers, aircraft and airline operators, selected crew members, staff at immigration and customs, cargo and baggage handlers.
The training aims to build the knowledge of the staff on safety measures, surveillance, prevention and control strategies and relevant regional guidelines.
“These trainings are implemented at a critical point in time, before international travel picks up again,”German Deputy Ambassador Thomas Wimmer said.
The latest developments give hope to the country’s aviation and travel industry, which has one of the most affected since the government’s suspension on intentional flights in March to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
The airline grounded a majority of its 36 aircraft, which includes nine Boeing 787 Dreamliners, 10 Boeing 737 aircraft, and 17 Embraers.