KENYA CIVIL AVIATION DUE TO PAY AFRICAN COMMUTER SERVICES 1.3 BILLION KENYA SHILLINGS
(Posted 24th December 2018)
In what must have been one of the worst Christmas presents ever, has Kenya’s Supreme Court delivered a final ruling against KCAA, compelling them to pay 1.3 billion Kenya Shillings to plaintiff African Commuter Services.
The case was lodged not long after KCAA pulled ACS’s AOC and operating licence and in 2008 did the High Court rule in favour of the plaintiff.
KCAA then took the case to the Court of Appeal, where the organization again lost before bringing it to the Supreme Court.
When the ruling came in, arrived at by a 5 justice bench, it once again sided with the airline, leaving KCAA in potentially financial dire straits, as the organization does not have that amount of money at their immediate disposal.
The current leadership of KCAA is now left to sort out the mess created by their predecessors and it is understood that high level consultation are going on to find ways and means to settle the payments without having auctioneers come and confiscate and auction assets of the Kenyan aviation regulators.
Given however that Kenya’s budget, dogged by an ever increasing debt burden and having to start repaying multi billion US Dollar loans in due course, is it anyone’s guess where the money will be coming from without having to lift funds off other budget lines to the detriment of those portfolios.
Only days ago did media reports in Kenya set tongues wagging when it was suggested that the Kenyan government had secured some of the massive loans received from China by giving the port of Mombasa as a collateral, which, in a worst case scenario of default, could see the Chinese take over Mombasa just as they did with the Sri Lankan port of Hambantota, giving an entirely new meaning to the Chinese project known as ‘Belt and Road Initiative‘.