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On Friday a video clip went viral of a roof leaking at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA). Early yesterday the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) issued a report detailing how the issue had been addressed as an emergency and that things were back to normal.

However in the evening photos were again shared of sections of the airport submerged under the deluge of rain water that has turned the city of Nairobi into one large swamp.

The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) has defended itself following leakages at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), attributing the issue to heavy rainfall affecting the temporary drainage infrastructure.

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This comes months after similar incidents were reported in November 2023, raising concerns about the airport’s infrastructure capacity and safety.

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JKIA leakages
The leakages have raised questions about the adequacy of JKIA’s infrastructure upgrades. Despite announcing refurbishment works and commencing them in March, videos surfaced on Friday showing parts of the airport affected by leaking roofs, hampering operations and causing inconvenience to passengers.

In a statement, KAA’s Managing Director, Henry Kegoye, clarified that the recent leakages were due to the ongoing refurbishment works at JKIA, which began in March 2024 and are expected to continue for three months.

KAA said recent heavy rainfall in Nairobi has strained the temporary drainage system, leading to roof leaks that disrupted airport operations.

“Over the last few days, the heavy rainfall in Nairobi has adversely impacted on the temporary drainage infrastructure put by the contractor on site, resulting in the current leakages being experienced at the terminal,” Kegoye said.

Kegoye noted that the contractor has been instructed to complete the refurbishments on schedule, and mitigation measures are in place to manage the leakages.

“Over the last few days, the heavy rainfall in Nairobi has adversely impacted on the temporary drainage infrastructure put by the contractor on site, resulting in the current leakages being experienced at the terminal.

“This is being mitigated as works progress and the contractor has been instructed to complete the works on schedule,” he added.

Kegoye extended an apology to airport users for the inconvenience caused and assured them that KAA is committed to maintaining the highest standards of service.

“We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience caused and thank you for your patience and understanding,” he said.

JKIA blackouts
In the past few months, JKIA has faced several challenges, including two blackouts in key terminals. The first blackout led to the dismissal of the previous KAA Managing Director, Alex Gitari, and General Engineering Manager, Fred Odawo.

The second black out happened in December 2023 and saw Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen call for a National Police investigation into possible acts of sabotage and cover-up at JKIA following a blackout that affected terminals 1A and 1E.

The blackout occurred during a nationwide power outage, and while standby generators promptly restored power in most parts of JKIA, terminals 1A and 1E remained in darkness for a while.

 

 

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