DCI probing KAA staff sabotage, Murkomen says

Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen speaking on Spice FM on THursday, December 14

Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen has said that the ministry has engaged the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to probe claims of sabotage from Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) staff.

Murkomen who was speaking on Spice FM on Thursday, December 14, said that he spoke to the former KAA Managing Director who admitted that there was sabotage.

The probe he said is important in clearing concerns raised by Kenyans over the frequent power outage at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).

“We have involved the DCI because some people suspected that these three failures were deliberate. Some think that we are doing mass changes in the airport. Therefore, to avoid gossip I thought it is important to involve an institution that can carry out a criminal investigation,” said Murkomen.

According to the CS, the investigation by DCI is among several measures undertaken to help resolve the issues at the airport.

He added that the problems facing our airports are systemic and are due to years of neglect by the Daniel Moi, Mwai Kibaki and Uhuru Kenyatta regimes.

"The problems we see at the airport are systemic of poor investment that we didn't put in place for many years. Our airport has suffered immense neglect," said Murkomen.

The CS said that KAA is facing a staff shortage to cater for the needs of the airports which leads to some of the problems being witnessed.

His remarks come days after the airport experienced a power outage in terminals 1A and 1E which lasted for about 30 minutes.

This was the third time the airport experienced a power blackout on its premises over the past three months.

According to Murkomen, the issue has been the lack of synchronization between the generators hence the lack of an automatic switchover once the power goes off.

For that reason, the CS says they have engaged experts from KenGen and Kenya Power to find a permanent solution.

“We think that the synchronization was not done right. Others felt that the generators do not meet the required specs or that the engineers were wrong. Therefore, we have involved experts from KenGen and Kenya Power who checked out everything and they will give us their report today,” he said.

Further, the appointed technical team is expected to issue a report on the infrastructure of the three main airports in the country next week.

This Murkomen says will enable the ministry to set a clear road map for airports in the country.

Additionally, he said that KAA will procure two generators that will be dedicated to the two terminals affected by power blackout and Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS) that will serve as a backup for the other terminals.