Bramwell Bushuru: The Only Kenyan Living In St Helena Island Working As An Air Traffic Controller

Bramwell Bushuru PHOTO/Courtesy

Bramwell Bushuru and his family are the only Kenyans living in St Helena Island, a remote volcanic tropical island located in South Atlantic Ocean.

He is the officer in charge of air traffic at St Helena Airport, which is also the island’s only airport.

Here is his story as told by WoK.

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Bushuru was born in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County and grew up in Kitale, a town in Trans Nzoia County.

He trained as an Air Traffic Controller at the East Africa School of Aviation, and worked with Kenya’s Directorate of Civil Aviation under the ministry of transport.

Bushuru relocated to the island in 2016 to work as an Air Traffic Controller at the airport, although he brought his family with him in 2022.

His journey to St Helena Island was through a job in South Africa.

When South Africa had been granted to host the FIFA World Cup, the country needed more Air Traffic Controllers, and went to recruit outside of South Africa.

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He was hired in 2010 through the Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS), and he worked until 2016 when he moved to St Helena.

“I came to the island because ATNS got a contract to provide air traffic services to St Helena government and that’s when I switched to come to the island,” he said.

For the longest time, he has been the only Kenyan living and working in the island with a population of about 4,000 people.

“When I came here, I met a few Africans in the island, I asked around if there were any Kenya but I came to learn that there were no Kenyans

“I heard that a couple of years ago they were here working as teachers but I’ve been the only Kenyan for a couple of years,” Bushuru said.

At the moment, there are three Kenyans in the island after Bushuru brought along his wife Sarah and their son.

In an interview with Chams Media, Bushuru explained that he enjoys the island because of its unique geography and culture.

“The terrain looks like you’re walking on the moon because the island was formed out of a volcanic activity centuries ago

“The people are very friendly and warm, and very simple systems, you don’t have to lock your car or even be worried about being mugged,” he said.

Bushuru is also widely known by top government officials in the island due to his role at the St Helena Golf Club.

He has been serving as the captain of the golf clib since 2018 when he was elected.

“I have been the captain since February 2018 when I was elected for the first time and subsequently every year I have been re-elected to that position,” he added.

Bushuru is also the vice chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee effective November 2022.

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