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Challenges with flight delays and cancellations

Kenya Airways not proud to be the pride for a change

Dr. Wolfgang H. Thome, eTN Uganda  Nov 19, 2011

(eTN) Passengers reacted angrily earlier in the week when their scheduled Kenya Airways (KQ) flight was first delayed and then cancelled altogether, prompting the country manager of KQ in Kampala to offer a formal apology to those affected.

The development took place on Thursday, causing a sizeable number of passengers to miss connecting flights, leaving KQ’s airport and town office staff under literal siege. Tweeted a Twitter pal by DM to this correspondent: "Flight to NBO delayed, will miss lunch apptmt, pls call them 4me" before later tweeting: "Flight now cancelled completely, tell them, wont be able 2 meet."

Scores of passengers were reportedly mobbing Kenya Airways and DAS handling staff as and when they were seen, as attempts were made to rebook passengers on alternative flights, especially those with onward connections beyond Nairobi.

A regular aviation source in Nairobi had this to say: "KQ’s expansion drive is exposing them to such problems. Their aircraft are heavily deployed and utilized, and they have little downtime.

"When a technical problem occurs, or several at a time with various aircraft, they do not have it easy to find a stand-by aircraft for all those affected flights. It may get a bit better when they get more Embraers next year, but then again, those are already planned for new routes.

"I think it shows now what hard work Bram Stellar as COO did at the airline, because before he arrived, Kenya Airways had a similar spell of problems, and he sorted those out real fast and restored KQ’s reputation. Whoever is in charge now of operations, has a very big pair of shoes to fill and match Bram’s rate of success."

Airline staff in Kampala, acquainted with this correspondent, understandably preferred not to go on record but expressed their deep regret over the delay and cancellation.

Kenya Airways not proud to be the pride for a change
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