Kenya Airways ordered to reinstate sacked engineers
Published on: December 18, 2017 01:09 (EAT)
National carrier Kenya Airways has been ordered to reinstate 157 employees it sacked last month pending the hearing and determination of the case filed by the aggrieved workers. The order will see the engineers and technicians resume work, having filed a case challenging the dismissal. In issuing the directive, Justice Hellen Wasilwa sided with employees stating it was unsafe for passengers to fly in planes that are not properly serviced. “I am like any other person who uses flight to travel and I cannot risk using planes that are un-serviced since all the engineers and technicians have been sacked, I therefore order that KQ reinstates the sacked employees with immediate effect, ”ruled Wasilwa. Kenya Airways’ technical department has suffered major exits with staff being poached by Middle East carriers over the past two years. The lawyers representing the sacked engineers Dismsas Wambola told the court that due to the festive seasons the engineers ought to be at work adding that it is unsafe for the planes to fly without being serviced. Kenya Airways had earlier applied for an adjournment of the case to enable it reply to the case but it was declined by the court and instead they were given until Tuesday to file its responses. The sacked technical staff had moved to court last week to challenge their dismissal saying that the engineers were dismissed without being offered the right to be heard. Kenya Airways lost about 80 engineers and technicians between January 2016 and February this year. The technical department had earlier in the year staged a strike which saw the airline’s management increase salaries from March. Kenya Airways claims technical assistants salaries were increased from Sh120,000 to Sh200,000 while production engineers saw the salaries increased to Sh340,000. The same group had been pushing to have salaries raised to Sh340,000 and Sh1.2 million respectively. On 6th of this month the Employment and Labor Relations Court ordered Kenya Airways to refrain from replacing the engineers it sacked after it advertised the positions in the dailies.