By Lawani Mikairu
Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA and Nigeria Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB, quarterly meeting to review all safety recommendations and implementation status has not been held in the last two years.
This was disclosed by the Director General, NCAA, Captain Usman Muktar while delivering his address on the “Implementation of Safety Recommendations and learning points – NCAA’s Perspective” at a forum organized by AIB in Lagos.
Muktar said the quarterly meeting with the AIB was initiated in 2016 and was held with the AIB and the NCAA alternatively hosting and was very productive. “However, the meeting has not held for about two years now, though there are evidences of NCAA requesting for its recommencement” he revealed .
According to him, in the last quarter of 2014, the then Minister of Aviation set up a Ministerial Committee on Nigerian Aviation Industry Aircraft Accident Reports Status (NAIAARS) with the Terms of Reference amongst which are: “To collate all Nigerian Aviation Industry aircraft accident reports from 2000 till date and Determine the status of all reports and recommendations”.
“The NCAA was invited to the Committee, where it presented the safety actions with supporting documents and evidences of the actions it had taken to address the safety recommendations made by the Bureau. The Committee in its Final Report stated that it reviewed the status of implementation of a total of One Hundred and Fifty Eight (158) Safety Recommendations, out of which One Hundred (100), representing 63% were fully closed, Nineteen (19), i.e. 14%, partially closed and Thirty Six (36) i.e. (23%), open.
Amongst the Committee’s recommendations are: “All the Agencies (NCAA, NAMA, FAAN, AIB, NIMET and NCAT) should as a matter of priority and urgency, establish an open, uninterrupted top-of-the-line electronic communication network, which should include intranet with high speed internet access for voice and data that may be encrypted. The Director General of the NCAA inaugurated an Inter Agency ICT Committee that developed the basis for the implementation of this recommendation. Their report was submitted to the Federal Ministry of Aviation”.
“NCAA should meet quarterly with all relevant stakeholders to address outstanding safety recommendations. Subsequently, NCAA should meet with the AIB quarterly to review all safety recommendations and implementation status. The meeting with the AIB was initiated in 2016 and was held with the AIB and the NCAA alternatively hosting and was very productive. However, the meeting has not held for about two years now, though there are evidences of NCAA requesting for its recommencement”.
“The NCAA wishes once more to use this forum to indicate its preparedness towards having this quarterly meeting with the Bureau to address the issues raised above”, the NCAA DG told the forum.
The AIB Regulations requires that an undertaking; for example an airline or manufacturer, or authority to whom a safety recommendation has been addressed shall, “without delay take that recommendation into consideration and, where appropriate, act upon it, send to the AIB Commissioner full details of the measures, if any, it has taken or proposes to take to implement the recommendation and, in a case where it proposes to implement measures, the timetable for securing that implementation, or provide a full explanation as to why no measures will be taken to implement the recommendation”.
Speaking on the collaboration between NCAA and AIB, the DG said the Nigerian Civil Aviation Act, 2006 Part VIII, Section 29 (13) states that “On the basis of the findings of an accident investigation, the Authority shall be informed and the Director General shall take corrective actions that, in the judgment of the Authority, will prevent similar accidents in the future”.
He also said to enable the NCAA comply with the requirements of the Act and the AIB Regulations, “the Authority has constituted a team of inspectors from the different technical areas and specialties of Airworthiness, Flight Operations, Air Navigation Services, Personnel Licensing and Aerodrome Operations.
On receipt of the draft reports on serious incidents and accidents from the Bureau, the team reviews the report in order to enhance its value, determine the necessity (whether to or not) to implement the safety recommendation and where required, develop safety actions to appropriately address the safety recommendations”.
“The NCAA’s response is forwarded to the Director General for amendments and acceptability and thereafter to the Bureau (AIB). Several Final Reports issued by the AIB contain these safety actions by the NCAA, ”Muktar added.