Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta has hinted at the lifting of the lockdown in Nairobi and Mombasa counties that has been in effect since April 7th.
This was in response to a question raised during the Corporate Council of African (CCA) Leaders Forum on Friday last week about when Kenya Airways would resume international flights.
“First and foremost, just to answer the question on KQ. We are going to be starting domestic flights and this is what we are going to use over the, let’s say the next couple of days. Coz we are opening up the lockdown that we’ve had between, inter-county lockdown. And ultimately I think that’s what’s going to set the pace for getting a day for us to open up now once again to international flights.”President Kenyatta
The lockdown which was extended on 6th June 2020 for a further 30 days elapses on 6th July 2020.
Kenya Airways Resuming Domestic Flights
The president also hinted at the resumption of domestic flights in the next couple of days. This is presumably after the lockdowns are lifted on 6th July. The domestic flights will then be used to gauge the country’s preparedness before resumption of international flights.
Kenya Airways at their recent AGM held on Friday last week announced that they are ready to resume flights but this was all dependant on the government lifting the lockdown. This should therefore come as a much welcome silver lining for the airline given that they anticipate to lose over Ksh 50 billion in revenue by december due to the pandemic.
However, the president was quick to note that the government would take the necessary precautions to ensure they don’t witness a rise in cases.
“We have seen that if you don’t take the necessary precautions, if you don’t put in place the necessary measures, opening up too quickly also has its downside as we have seen in different parts of the world.” added President Kenyatta. “So we are very eager to open up, but at the same time, we are also eager to make sure that we all stay safe, and we all stay healthy and we save lives.”
Could we finally see the lockdown lifted? Have we managed to contain the spread of the virus? Will lifting the virus help the economy start its recovery process?