Kenya Airways is likely to lose an estimated 300 million shillings ($2.5 million) per day if the planned strike by pilots at Kenyan airways takes place as scheduled.
KALPA, a union that represents more than 400 pilots at the carrier, issued a notice that is set to trigger a strike at midnight on Wednesday over a dispute involving pensions, accrued back salaries, and other complaints.
The Board of Kenyan Airways said on Wednesday that the planned strike would jeopardise the airline’s recovery from the pandemic and would be unjustified.
“None of the grievances advanced by KALPA merits an industrial strike,” the board said in a statement, adding all pay deals with unions must reflect the company’s effort to return to profit.
KALPA, which has been ordered by a court not to proceed with the strike, declined to comment.
Records available indicate that Kenya Airways ferried an average of 8,000 passengers every day in the first half of this year.
The union is demanding the airline restarts contributions to its staff pension fund, which stopped during the pandemic, and the payment of all back salaries that were accrued at the time.
Like other airlines, Kenya Airways grounded its fleet and deferred pay for workers when the pandemic took hold.
The board said it had been making progress, with all workers now getting full pay every month and some extra cash towards gradually settling the deferred pay.