Kenya to know fate on direct flights to US before Christmas


Kenya will have to wait for six weeks to know the fate on the direct flights to the US after the completion of of the final audit by an American transport agency.

The officials from US Transportation Security Administration were in the country two weeks ago for a four-day audit of the facility and are expected to release the full report before Christmas.

 “The results of this audit will be out in six weeks time and we expect to have performed well,” said Transport secretary James Macharia in a news conference Monday.

Delta Airlines had previously set an earlier date to launch the flights but had to cancel due to security concerns. The minister said that the flights are expected to start probably from June.

Eight years ago, Delta Airlines cancelled planned flights between Atlanta in the US and the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport through Dakar, Senegal, over security issues. Delta, together with KQ, are members of the Sky Team airline alliance.

The national carrier was granted air traffic rights to the United States airspace in July 2017.

The airline has to seek clearance from the US-Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) before commencing flights to America.

Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) attained ‘category one’ status on February 23, 2017, having met the mandatory status required by US authorities.

Under former US President Barrack Obama’s administration, trade and investments between Kenya and the US recorded remarkable growth, with net imports increasing by 206.4 per cent from the previous administration, highlighting the improved activity in trade between the two nations.