KCAA offices in Nairobi, Kenya/ kcaa.or.ke
NAIROBI, Kenya Apr 25- The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) board has named Nicholas Bodo as its acting Director-General. This comes after a court blocked the appointment of Emile Nguza Arao over the alleged abuse of office and financial misappropriation.
Bodo, who is currently the Director of Air Services at the Ministry of Transport will take over from Arao in acting capacity pending the hearing of a suit filed by Sheria Mtaani, a local lobby group that challenged Arao’s appointment.
Last month, Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia appointed Arao to head the KCAA for a three-year term. Arao was meant to succeed Gilbert Kibe, who exited the State Corporation last week after serving for two three-year terms.
“They have been forced to appoint Bodo as the acting Director-General of KCAA until the case is determined,’’ a top source familiar with the details revealed.
Kibe has left after serving KCAA for six years. The state entity is mandated with the management, regulation, and operation of a safe, secure and efficient air transport system in Kenya.
Arao formerly headed the East African Civil Aviation Safety and Security Oversight Agency (EAC-Cassoa).
He has been battling allegations of incompetence and misuse of finances at Cassoa after the East African Legislative Assembly, in an audit report, singled him out over poor management of finances and recommended he be personally held accountable.
The assembly accused Arao of presiding over questionable and excessive administrative and consultancy expenses, payments of staff education allowances, travel costs, and issues of the improper running of the East African body.
Sheria Mtaaani and Shadrack Wamboi moved to the Employment and Labour Relations Court in Nakuru and obtained orders on March 17 blocking Arao from taking up the top post.
Arao has however dismissed the petitioner’s prayers arguing that his case is based on unfounded allegations.
He noted that if there had been any evidence of massive pilferage of funds, mismanagement, wastage, or theft, the audited financial statement and management letter would have led to a qualification of the accounts and this has yet to happen.