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KQ has no immediate plans to resume West Africa flights

17 October 2014, 09:24

Nairobi - Kenya Airways said Thursday it has no immediate plans to resume flights to West African countries where more than 4,000 people have been killed due to Ebola outbreak.

Kenya Airways CEO designate Mbuvi Ngunze also denied reports carried in a section of the Liberian media, alluding to the resumption of suspended flights to Monrovia on Oct. 24.

"We wish to clarify that the status quo remains until the government of Kenya lifts the suspension put in place in August," Ngunze said in a brief statement to Xinhua.

Kenya Airways said it took the drastic decision on the advice of the ministry of health after the government announced it will not allow all people travelling from the Ebola hit nations of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia to enter its territory.

The suspension excludes Kenyan citizens returning home from the three countries, who must, however, undergo extensive screening.

Also read: Doctors call on govt to increase efforts to tackle Ebola

The national carrier in August joined other global airlines in suspending flights to the West African destinations.

Ngunze said the airline has not settled on a resumption date tentative or otherwise, saying the customers will be advised accordingly should any changes arise.

"Our loyal guests in Liberia can be assured that a resumption commitment still stands but the dates for the same will be officially communicated through our formal channels," Ngunze said.

The national carrier also said it could lose up to 47.2 million U.S. dollars, about 4 percent of its annual revenues, in revenues this fiscal year following the suspension of flights to the West African nations.

The World Bank has warned that with the latest death toll from Ebola at more than 4,000 in the three worst-affected countries of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, the economic impacts of Ebola are already very serious in the three countries, particularly Liberia and Sierra Leone, which could become catastrophic under a slow-containment, high Ebola scenario.

 - Xinhua

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