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Kenya Pilots Union Demands Release Of Arrested Aviation Officials

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/ Courtesy

The Kenya Airline Pilots Association has called for the immediate release of Kenya Aviation Workers Union (KAWU) officials who were arrested after they staged demonstrations on Wednesday morning.

In a statement on Friday, KALPA secretary general Murithi Nyagah, said the workers were exercising their constitutional right and should not have been arrested.

“We call for the release of KAWU officials and urge all parties involved to embrace the spirit of dialogue, and make effort to amicably resolve the current stalemate,” he said.

He further condemned how security officers deployed at Jomo Kenyatta International airport handled the striking workers.

Among those in police custody are KAWU Secretary General Moses Ndiema and other aviation officials who participated in the strike.

KALPA reiterated the need to have a safe, secure and positive work environment.

Meanwhile, A Nairobi court on Friday ruled that the aviation workers union members will remain in custody for one more week.

The judge directed that a bail application for the Kenya Aviation Workers Union officials be heard on March 14, 2019.

They are accused of leading a near 12-hour disruption of services at the airport, leaving thousands of passengers stranded and tens of flights grounded.

The workers, who are opposed to the handover of management of the airport to Kenya Airways, were reported to have downed their tools from Wednesday midnight and had fire engines withdrawn from the runway.

Read:Planes Operating From JKIA Forced To Fuel In Neighboring Countries’ Airports

They are also accusing the KQ leadership of financial wastage.

As the strike intensified, police engaged in running battles with the striking workers and lobbed teargas canisters to disperse them.

Also read:Mudavadi Asks Uhuru To Stop KQ-JKIA Takeover Scheme And Deal With Graft

However, hours later, operations resumed at JKIA after the government was forced to deploy military officers to take over operations at the airport.

Some passengers were reportedly injured during the incident.

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Written by Wycliffe Nyamasege

Just email news@kahawatungu.com

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