The Parliamentary budget committee last week rejected a budget request of 85 billion presented by the Ministry of Works and Transport, to procure a spare engine for the Bombardier CRJ 900 aircraft on grounds that it is too soon for the airline to request for a new engine.
Instead, the MPs proposed that 57 billion shillings of the fund should be used to fund the procurement of road maintenance equipment for the 16 new administrative equipment units of the country.
“Now what happens one day if this plane develops a problem as it's carrying passengers and it crashes? Will we be wrong to say it's these MPs' fault? Because the airline is saying that it needs a spare engine,” said James Onen aka Fatboy during The Fatboy Show.
Olive Najjuma, the co-host of the Show in response quoted Raheem Shakila the Public relations manager of the airline who said that, “the airline does not need the money for the engine because it costs 7.5 million dollars,(approximately 26 billion shillings) but rather the money was to buy one for spare and maintenance such that in the event that there’s a malfunctioned one, it can easily be replaced.
“Well, I think I'm in agreement with the Ministry of Works. I actually think that we need to buy this engine,” Fatboy stated.
Similarly, Olive Najjuma also said that she concurred with the procurement of the engine but questioned the amount needed to procure it. “So maybe we can look into the 7.5 million dollars. But is the engine that expensive or is the amount being exaggerated?” She asked.
“Well you know what kind of country this is, so one would have put it past them,” replied Fatboy adding that the idea itself was a reasonable one.
“At least in principle, the idea of procuring another engine to me sounds sensible because even here, we operate some technical equipment. You need to have backups because if one machine goes down, how are you going to carry on until you get a replacement especially when most of the operating equipment is imported, it can be a challenge,” Fatboy explained.
The Fatboy show is hosted by James Onen aka Fatboy, Olive and Sarah every weekday from 6am to 10am on RX Radio.