18 February 2013

Nigeria: Aviation Stakeholders React to AIB Report

The Director-General, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Dr Harold Demuren, said that the blame levelled against his authority in the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) report, did not happen during his tenure.

Demuren said this on Monday while addresing aviation correspondents at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMA), Ikeja.

He said that the air crashes, which the AIB investigated, never happened under his leadership, adding that the authority was saddled with the responsibility of regulating the activities of airlines.

"If it had happened under my leadership, the sector and the country would not have attained the Federal Airports Authority Category 1 status that guarantees foreign airlines to fly into the country.

"Also, the country would not have passed the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) audit confirming that the civil aviation in Nigeria is complying with the international regulatory body's laid down regulations," he said.

Demuren said that the NCAA has put in place reforms that enhance safety and security of airlines and passengers.

Meanwhile, Mr Ekanem Ekanem, Chairman, Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN), Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, (FAAN), Lagos branch, has commended the bureau for issuing the report.

Ekanem said that the report had further demonstrated and confirmed that Nigeria was doing aviation business in line with international best practice.

"It portrays openness, due process and transparency, and the aviation sector has come to abreast itself with the global best practice.

"And, making such information available to the public, as and when due, is something that we have to embrace, " he said.

He said that all stakeholders in the industry would be guided by the recommendations highlighted in the report to guard them against future occurrence.

Ekanem advised airlines operators to continue to upgrade their aircraft with modern safety facilities and devices that would make them highly proactive.

He expressed confidence in the report, adding that all airlines must respect it.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the AIB last Saturday uploaded on its website the report of its findings involving Bellview, ADC, Sosoliso air crashes and five others.

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