Nairobi News

GeneralMust ReadNewsWhat's Hot

Parts of Nairobi hit by power blackouts including JKIA

A power blackout has hit parts of the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), hours after Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen toured the facility and said they had “stabilised the power supply”.

The power outage is said to have affected Terminal 1C, where leaking roofs disrupted services and inconvenienced passengers on Saturday, April 27, with the CS blaming the problem on ageing infrastructure.

Speaking to Citizen TV on Tuesday evening, April 30, the CS said the airport will not have a power outage of 10-20 minutes or a leak, it will happen.

“These are small things that happen in any existing institution. There has never been any interruption of services at the airport. People were moved to continue to be screened in line while we continued to fix the water leak,” he said.

Leakages and power cuts are not special events and can happen at any time in the facility. Any infrastructure disruption of 20 minutes or an hour is a short time. People should not make a big deal out of it”.

At press time, the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) had yet to issue a statement on the power outage and when it would be restored.

In December, KAA was at pains to explain why JKIA was still unable to automatically switch to a backup power supply when the country was plunged into darkness as several parts of the country experienced a power outage.

The blackout came a month after the CS set up an 11-member committee to look into the state of the country’s airports and make recommendations within 28 days.

Mr Murkomen said the team was mandated to identify immediate remedial measures to improve facilities and passenger comfort at JKIA, Wilson and Moi International Airports in Mombasa.

This was despite the fact that KAA said only terminals 1A and 1E at JKIA were affected by the blackout. “No runway lights were affected during take-offs and landings,” KAA said.

Upon receipt of the report, he ordered the immediate commissioning of the standby generators to provide primary backup and the provision of the additional secondary backup generator for Terminals 1A, 1E and 2.

“After meeting with the committee and going through the report, I have directed the KAA to replace all the faulty baggage screening machines with 3D technology,” he said.

The country has experienced a number of nationwide power cuts, including one on August 26 that lasted more than 20 hours, with some regions experiencing intermittent power.

Read more