Kenyan Air Force inducts two C-27J Spartan tactical aircraft

The Kenya Air Force (KAF) has successfully inducted its two new C-27J Spartan transport aircraft on 14 February in a ceremony held at Embakasi Garrison. On 30 January, Italian-based Leonardo delivered two C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft to the Kenyan Air Force, out of the three aircraft initially ordered.

The induction ceremony was presided over by KAF Commander, Major General Francis Ogolla, who stated that the Kenya Air Force is proud to join other Air Forces around the globe that operate the plane. Ogolla also said that a team of pilots, loadmasters, and crew have already received specialized training on the C-27J.

Both Spartan aircraft with serial number 224 and 222 touched down at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport from Italy on 30 January. President Uhuru Kenyatta was present during the arrival.

Kenya decided to purchase the C-27J aircraft after a report submitted to the parliamentary public accounts committee by the Kenyan Treasury Secretary Henry Rotich in June 2018.

The aircraft is expected to undergo acceptance trials before entering service with the Kenya Air Force. It is not clear when the third aircraft will be delivered.

The three C-27J Spartan will replace the four DHC-5 Buffalos currently in its inventory which were acquired more than 30 years ago. The Kenyan Air Force also possesses eleven new Chinese-made Harbin Y-12 transport planes and about three Canadian-built Bombardier Dash 8.

Patrick Kenyette

Freelance journalist and Photographer, and regular African Military Blog contributor