Pilots working with Kenya Airways have called off their biting strike following a Tuesday ruling by the Employment and Labour Relations Court ordering them to report back to work.
In a statement on Tuesday night, Kenya Airline Pilots Association (KALPA) said it had withdrawn its strike notice and asked its members to report to work on Wednesday at 6 am.
“Members are also urged to report to the Executive Council any incident of victimisation or disciplinary action that may be taken contrary to the court's orders,” said Kalpa in the statement.
KALPA intimated that the pilots regretted the inconvenience the strike had caused to KQ customers and told its members to work to restore normalcy at the national carrier.
The KQ pilots downed their tools at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) from Saturday in violation of an order issued by the Labour Relations court last week.
Judge Anna Mwaure, in decision on Tuesday, directed the striking KQ pilots to report back to their workstations by 6:00am on November 9, 2022, without issuing any conditions.
Earlier, KQ, through CEO Allan Kilavuka, welcomed the decision by the court saying it will pave way for its normal operations to resume in the country’s international airport.
While welcoming the decision by the court on Tuesday, Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen called on Kenya Airways not to target any pilot who took part in the industrial action.
“The past 4 days have been difficult for Kenya’s aviation industry due to the strike by the Kenya Airline Pilot Association (Kalpa). We convey our sincere apologies to travellers and cargo customers affected by the strike," said Murkomen in a statement.
He added: “I also urge the management of Kenya Airways to obey the court order barring the victimisation of any of the pilots who participated in the strike.”
Murkomen noted that KQ was bleeding more than Sh300 million daily and that a prolonged strike was also adversely affecting more than 18,000 people who depend on the airline.
He concluded: “In the past 3 days, this strike has disrupted travel plans for over 12,000 customers across KQ network, forced the cancellation of over 300 flights and affected 3,500 other employees who were not part of it."