Kenya Airports Authority fires Managing Director Alex Gitari

posted on 4th September 2023 by Eddie Saunders
Kenya Airports Authority fires Managing Director Alex Gitari

Roads and Transport Cabinet Secretary, Kipchumba Murkomen, has taken decisive action in response to the recent power blackout at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), which left passengers stranded for over two hours.

In the wake of the incident, Murkomen has announced significant changes in the leadership of the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA).

Alex Gitari, who served as the Managing Director of KAA, has been relieved of his duties as a direct consequence of the power outage incident.

In his place, Henry Ogoye, currently the Head of Corporate Planning, has been appointed as the acting Managing Director.

Additionally, Fred Odawo, who held the position of Project and Engineering Services General Manager, has also been dismissed from his role. Samuel Mwochache has been designated as his replacement.

Murkomen emphasized that KAA has faced numerous challenges in recent years, including issues related to management and political interference, which have adversely affected the morale and organization of the workforce.

Despite the power blackout incident, Murkomen assured the public that the safety of incoming and outgoing flights and passengers at JKIA was not compromised.

He explained that backup generators were swiftly deployed to ensure that essential areas such as the runway and control tower remained well-illuminated.

To prevent similar incidents in the future, Murkomen directed the immediate commissioning of two backup generators that were procured more than two years ago but had remained unused.

In addition to these changes, several other alterations in the management of airports were announced. Abel Gogo, the former Airport Manager of JKIA, has been transferred to Mombasa International Airport.

Selina Gor, who previously managed Kisumu International Airport, has assumed the role of Airport Manager at JKIA. Peter Wafula, the former Manager of Mombasa Airport, has been reassigned to Kisumu International Airport.

Power outages are not uncommon in Kenya, but the unexpected blackout at JKIA led to widespread frustration and anger among the public.

Kenya Power eventually restored power at the airport and in various regions across the country after nearly five hours of disruption.

However, as of Saturday, certain areas, including Nairobi, were still experiencing power outages, despite assurances from the utility company that they were working diligently to resolve the issue and restore normalcy.

image credit: Kenya Airports Authority/facebook