Kenya Airways chief executive Sebastian Mikosz has dismissed claims on social media that he earns a monthly salary of over Sh8 million.
In a statement sent to newsrooms, Mr Mikosz termed the claims as “groundless and unjustified”. He said his monthly salary was Sh2.7 million, which was subject to 29 percent income tax that he remits to the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).
Sebastian Mikosz also denied that the national carrier is dominated by foreign employees and consultants who take home a combined Sh70 million per month.
The claims were reportedly made in a statement by the Kenya Aviation Workers Union (Kawu) secretary general Moss Ndiema.
“As of today, KQ employs 18 expatriates, including all secondments, out of the total number of more than 3,000 employees. This is approximately 0.6 percent of the entire KQ staff,” said Mikosz.
Of the 18 foreign employees, 5 are KLM managers seconded to Kenya Airways. Two of them are holding senior positions of chief operating officer and head of global sales.
“Although they work for KQ, they remain KLM employees. Their salaries and any other benefits are covered by KLM. This means that no one in KQ has access to that information. The amounts in the public domain are, therefore, purely fictitious and aimed at creating negative emotions in the working environment,” he said.
“This means our company is run by a strong contingent of Kenyans who represent 86 percent of the highest positions in the company. The remaining seconded employees ensure knowledge transfer and address competency gaps in the areas of financial modelling, building business cases and coordinating the strategic projects.
“They leverage experience gathered in the restructuring of companies in Europe. This also relates to the team of seven consultants, commonly referred to as the ‘polish team’. Moreover, fees for their services are also much lower than of the consulting companies that supported KQ in the past,” he said.
The KQ boss also defended his wife, Magda Mikosz, against allegations that she sits in the board of Delloite Kenya that is claimed to audit KQ.
“My wife does not and has never worked for Deloitte Kenya. Magda worked as a partner for Deloitte Central Europe in the past. When we moved to Kenya, she decided to stop working, leave Deloitte and support me in my current role,” he said.
“This deliberate action was done with the sole purpose of fueling negative public opinion towards myself, the KQ family, its management and employees,” he said.
“The authors of this letter did not check the basic facts so as to mislead the public. I would like to assure you that I am not taking the efforts at misinformation and defamation lightly and I’ve already taken legal action against individuals and groups spreading the defamatory statements. Let the courts objectively assess the facts and pass judgment,” he added.