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Transport CS James Macharia during the flag off of the KQ plane as domestic flights resume. Photo: KQ

Kenya Airways planes resume domestic flights amid Covid-19 pandemic.

Kenya has resumed domestic flights with the first flight leaving for the Mombasa’s Moi international airport from JKIA on the morning of Wednesday July 15.

Transport CS James Macharia flagged off the Kenya Airways plane KQ602 to Mombasa at 10.15am and minutes later flagged off another plane KQ654 to Kisumu Airport.

Speaking during the flag off which marks a return of the much awaited flights within the country, Macharia stated that Kenya now looks forward to resumption of International flights.

“…but let us make sure that these local flights are the benchmark of success. If we do not do it correctly, the opportunity to fly internationally may be reversed,” Macharia stated.

Earlier, passengers were seen queuing for screening even as they kept the one meter distance.

As a way to ensure that passengers adhered to the guidelines, the airline placed water and soap at designated areas to allow passengers wash their hands before being screened.

The floors at the airport are also marked with social distancing stickers to emphasize on the need of observing distance and stickers reminding you to wear a mask at all times.

However, the airline capacity will not be reduced to factor in social distancing rules when both domestic and international flights resume.

Macharia said if airlines carry less than 75 per cent of the passengers they will go at a loss.

“…but these passengers must go with Covid-19 free certificate. I would expect that if you are flying out, it would be prudent for you to be tested because you may not be allowed into other countries,” he said.

President Uhuru Kenyatta announced that domestic flights will resume on July 15 while international flights will resume on August 1.

This will be in strict conformity with all applicable guidelines and protocols from both the Ministry of Health and civil aviation authorities.

Uhuru noted that additional requirements applicable at the ports of departure, arrival or transit must be adhered to.

In March, the government suspended all international flights in and out of the country.