Arusha — The East African Community (EAC) aviation body has been voted the second best in the world in spearheading safety and security enforcements.
The Civil Aviation Safety and Security Oversight Agency (Cassoa) earned the slot after being voted by the International Civil Aviation Organization (Icao).
The Entebbe-based institution of the EAC emerged second in the votes on performance involving 17 other similar aviation oversight bodies across the world. "Cassoa was voted as the second best safety and security aviation agency in the world", affirmed the organization's acting executive director Emile Ngunza Arao over the weekend.
He told the EAC secretary general Liberat Mfumukeko who visited the headquarters of the facility that the organization was doing well in discharging its duties despite a host of challenges.
Cassoa was established in 2007 as one of the institutions of the Community and mandated to make air transportation in the region safe, efficient and profitable. It was also tasked to adopt common policies for the development of civil air transport in the region comprising of six partner states. Additionally, it was mandated to harmonise civil aviation rules and regulations and coordinate maintenance of high security. The safety and security oversight obligations and responsibilities fall under the EAC Treaty and the Chicago Convention which established Icao, a specialized agency of the UN. The Convention established rules of airspace, aircraft registration and safety and details the rights of the signatories in relation to air travel. As of November last year, the Convention, revised eight times between 1959 and 2006, had 192 state parties, including all the EAC member countries.
Aviation security encompasses addressing risks associated with aircraft movements and investigation of flight failures and their prevention through training. Despite praise from across the world on its safety and security, Cassoa has repeatedly been challenged to reduce the high cost of air travel.