Aviation Minister Asks ICAO To Revive HRDF

The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, and others pose for a photograph at an event in Abuja on May 16, 2022.

 

The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, has called on the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) to ensure the revival of the Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF), which has become inactive in the past four years.

In his remarks on Monday in Abuja at the opening ceremony of the 7th Africa-Indian Ocean (AFI) Aviation Week 2022 organised by ICAO, in conjunction with NCAA, Sirika said that the HRDF was necessary for the growth of the sector in Africa and other developing nations.

He appealed to the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC) and other stakeholders on the continent to pressurise the ICAO Secretary-General to use his good office to revive the fund which has remained inactive since 2018.

According to Sirika, Nigeria is one of the major contributors to the fund, which primary purpose is to train technical personnel for the industry.

He stressed that personnel trained in this programme had gained tremendous knowledge of the industry in the past.

The fund, the minister stated, would assist them (African states) to better meet the human resource needs required for operational efficiency and continuous implementation of ICAO’s Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs).

“I wish to seize this opportunity to appeal to member states here present and the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC) to call on the ICAO Secretary-General to use his good offices to revive the ICAO Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF) which has remained inactive since 2018,” he said.

“Nigeria generously contributed to this fund and equally benefited from the inaugural secondment of officers to ICAO under this programme. The exposure, experience, and knowledge gained by the officers attest to the usefulness of the HRDF programme.”

Sirika reiterated the support of Nigeria to ICAO’s initiatives and collaboration with member states and development partners on the development of air transport in Africa.

The Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Musa Nuhu, on his part, pointed out that air transportation has the potential to accelerate the social-economic growth and development of states, which was further brought to the fore by the COVID-19 pandemic.

He lamented that two years after the outbreak of COVID-19, the global aviation industry was still struggling to fully recover from its impact.

Nuhu emphasised that the experience of the last two years has underscored the fact that overcoming challenges and achieving meaningful growth in the industry could only be realised through cooperation, collaboration, and coordination among stakeholders.

He hoped that the weeklong event would further enhance the collective efforts within the region in the areas of aviation safety, security, and facilitation.

The highlight of the event was the signing of Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) between Nigeria and Sierra Leone, and Rwanda.

Nigeria Re-Elected Into ICAO Council

A file photo of the Minister of Aviation. Photo: [email protected]

 

 

Nigeria has been re-elected as a Part-II member of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Council, for a new three-year term.

The Federal Government disclosed this in a statement on Saturday by Mr James Odaudu, the Director of Public Affairs at the Federal Ministry of Aviation.

According to the statement, Nigeria garnered 151 votes out of the 193-member states, 18 more than it did in 2016.

The Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, in his reaction said the continued success and recognition of the country in all issues relating to the world aviation governing body only goes to show that Nigeria is on course in its transformation agenda for the aviation sector.

He noted that the re-election of Nigeria into the ICAO Council would further spur it to push for the attainment of the ideals and objectives of the organisation, with a stronger commitment to the implementation of the Aviation Sector Development Roadmap of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.

Also reacting to the re-election, the Country Representative on the ICAO Council, Captain Nuhu Musa, described it as a momentous occasion for the country.

The feat, according to him, shows the growing influence and popularity of Nigeria within the global aviation industry.

The ICAO is a specialised agency of the United Nations which changes the principles and techniques of international air navigation, as well as fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth.

The organisation congratulated Nigeria and other countries elected into the council in the tweet below:

President Buhari Receives ICAO, AFDB Delegations

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday received representatives of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) at the State House in Abuja.

Both delegations were led by President of the Council of International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), Dr Olumuyiwa Aliu, and AFDB Vice President, Mr Pierre Guislain.

See photos below;

MMIA Lagos Gets Civil Aviation Certification

Murtala Muhammed International Airport , Lagos.

The Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos has been certified in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

This certification makes the airport the first airport in the country to be certified by the Nigerian civil aviation authority (NCAA) out of the 22 airports managed by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).

This development makes the airport a global safe airport for aircraft operations.

This certification comes after a 5-step rigorous as mandated by the ICAO.

The director- general of the NCAA, Muhtar Usman speaking at the certificate presentation ceremony in Lagos on Monday said the sustenance of the new status is very important.

Nigeria Plans Automation Of Air Communication System By 2017

planeThe Nigerian government will install satellite equipment to improve communication at the nation’s airports by 2017.

Speaking in Abuja on Monday at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) conference on Aviation Safety in Africa, the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, said the procurement and installation were part of the automation upgrade to be carried out in airports across the country.

Senator Sirika told reporters that the equipment would assist the National Emergency Management Agency with relevant data for search and rescue operations.

“As you might be aware, few years ago we embarked on a project for the provision of a new aeronautical telecommunication network under the A.I.S. Automation project.

“The primary objective of the project is to automate our aeronautical information management system, develop a new communication backbone with a network at all Nigerian airports, as well as at the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency’s headquarters and the Nigerian Emergency Management Agency for search and rescue coordination.

“The project has delivered a centralised aeronautical database that is currently being populated with data that will enhance seamless integration with other states of the regional databases,” she said.

The Minister further explained that the first phase of this project was scheduled for completion in 11 locations shortly after Christmas this year while the remaining 15 locations would be completed in the coming financial year.

NCAA Bans Unauthorised Use Of Drones

Drones, NCAAThe Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has banned the launching of Remotely Piloted Aircraft (known as drones), in the Nigerian airspace without its permit and that of the office of National Security Adviser.

In a statement issued by the agency’s spokesman, Mr Sam Adurogboye, NCAA said that the move is part of the safety guidelines issued by the regulatory agency to drone operators following the proliferation of the technology in the country.

According to the agency, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) is yet to publish standards and recommended practices, as far as certification and operation of civil use of drones is concerned.

In the meantime, the NCAA has put in place regulations and advisory circular to guide the certification and operations of civil RPA in the Nigerian airspace.

We Need To Re-establish Nigeria’s Integrity – Buhari

Nigeria's President, Buhari and Bernard AliyuPresident Muhammadu Buhari has stressed the urgent need to ensure that the potentials of Nigeria are harnessed and used for the good of the country.

Receiving the President of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), Dr. Bernard O. Aliyu on Monday at the State House, Abuja, President Buhari said: “Nigeria needs to work on her potentials, so that we don’t remain permanently at the level of potentials.

“A Lot Of Indiscipline”

“If Ethiopia is sustained largely by her airline industry, we have greater potentials here. But we must move out, engage with the rest of the world, as we need to re-establish the integrity of this country. We need to rebuild this country again”.

The President recounted that for the greater part of the last 16 years, oil was sold above $100 per barrel but expressed regret that the nation did not have much to show for it.

“In the First Republic, more enduring infrastructure was built with meagre resources. But in the past 16 years, we made a lot of money without planning for the rainy day.

“We showed a lot of indiscipline in managing our economy, and that is why we are where we are today. But this time round, we’ll do our best.”

The Nigerian-born ICAO President commended President Buhari for strides on anti-corruption and urged President Buhari to pay more attention to development of civil aviation.

“Civil aviation is a catalyst for economic development. The level of aviation development in any country mirrors the economic development of that country,” Dr. Aliyu said.

The ICAO President pledged to support the development of the aviation industry in Nigeria, urging the country to improve on training and capacity development, aviation security, aerodromes and air navigation, runways, control towers, terminal buildings among others.

Aviation Minister Orders Probe Of Unauthorised Equipment

AviationThe Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, has directed an immediate investigation into the use of an unauthorised equipment by Aero Contractors Airlines at the conclusion of a chartered flight to Bauchi on Saturday.

Reports received by the Minister on Sunday, revealed that the airline used a ladder to disembark passengers from a Boeing 737 aircraft at the Bauchi Airport on Saturday, December 19.

A statement signed by the Deputy Director, Press and Public Affairs of the Ministry of Aviation, Mr James Odaudu, said that the act was inconsistent with Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (NCARs), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs).

The statement added that the investigation would determine the immediate and remote causes of the incident, and will develop and implement measures that would prevent a recurrence of the unsafe and unacceptable procedure that exposed passengers to high risk of injury.

The Minister assured the traveling public that the Ministry of Transport, in collaboration with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) would ensure strict adherence to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations as well as ICAO standards and recommended practices by all operators.

Aero Contractors Airline, in a statement explained that a special charter flight operated by Aero to Bauchi had problems with unserviceable equipment by the airport management in dis-embarking about 34 passengers from Abuja.

“Consequently, against the airline’s wish and operation safety guideline, the passengers used a ladder to disembark.

“However, at the time of boarding, the air stairs became functional and the passengers boarded successfully”,  the statement said.

The airline said it took adequate safety measures for the operation, including the airport’s ground staff crew to handle the air stairs equipment in Bauchi, but unfortunately, it became unserviceable at the point of disembarkation.

“Although, the airline crew tried to calm down the passengers to wait while the equipment was being fixed, the passengers insisted on their own volition to disembark against all safety protocol of the airline.

“Aero Contractors wishes to state that it is reviewing its safety measures with all charter operations to all airports to prevent such re-occurrence. Aero will continue to take adequate measures to ensure that its operations remain safe and secure”, the airline said.

Benin Airport Shut Down For Runway Repairs

Benin Airport The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), has announced that flight operations at the Benin Airport will be shut from Saturday, June 20 till Friday, July 10, to facilitate rehabilitation work on the airport’s runway.

The Agency, in a statement, explained that the Asaba Airport and the Osubi Airstrip in Warri, Delta State, could be used as alternatives to the Benin airport while the closure lasts.

It added that the runway rehabilitation work is part of a routine maintenance programme designed by FAAN to ensure that airport runways and other ancillary facilities do not fall below standards recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Air Asia: Report Won’t Include Black Box Data

asiaAn Indonesian investigator said on Tuesday that the prior report into last month’s crash of an Air Asia passenger jet that killed 162 people will exempt analysis of the black box flight recorders.

The National Transportation Safety Committee will submit its findings this week to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on Air Asia’s first crash.

The Airbus AIR.PA A320-200 vanished from radar screens on December 28, less than halfway into a two-hour flight from Surabaya, Indonesia’s second-biggest city, to Singapore. There were no survivors.

A multinational search and recovery operation have recovered 70 bodies and hopes to find more after locating the fuselage of the plane. But days of rough weather and poor underwater visibility have hampered navy divers’ efforts.

NTSC investigator Suryanto said that the report which the ICAO requires within 30 days after the accident, would include “information on the plane, the number of passengers and other necessary information.”

It would not include analysis from the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder, found by divers beneath Java Sea.

Information from radar and the aircraft’s two “black box” flight recorders provides a clearer view of what occurred during the final minutes of Flight QZ8501.

Transport Minister, Ignasius Jonan, told a parliamentary hearing last week that, the plane had climbed faster than normal in its final minutes, and then stalled, based on radar data.

NTSC head Tatang Kurniadi said, the NTSC will hold an annual media conference this week to deliberate on the agency’s achievements over the past year. The agency is not expected to discuss details of  its investment into the Air Asia crash.

Aviation: Nigeria Retains CAT-1 Certification

Cat-1Nigeria has retained the United States Federal Aviation Administration’s category one status certification, six months after a re-audit exercise.

With this, Nigerian airlines can continue to operate direct flights into the United States of America.

The CAT-1 audit, also known as the International Aviation Safety Assessment, is a programme established by the FAA with the purpose of ensuring that all aircraft operators registered outside the US that operate to or from the country are properly licensed.

It is also to ensure that they are subject to safety oversight provided by a competent civil aviation authority.

At a press briefing in Lagos, South-West Nigeria, the Acting Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, Benedict Adeyileka, said that the regulatory agency was now looking forward to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) audit which is more comprehensive.

Reps. To Investigate Purchase Of Armoured Cars

The House of Representatives has mandated its committee on aviation to investigate the controversy surrounding the purchase of two exotic armoured vehicles by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) which are said to be for the Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah.

This resolution followed a debate on a motion of urgent national importance by the minority whip Samson Osagie who brought up the matter during plenary.

The lawmaker said given the poverty in the land, it was unpatriotic for an agency of government to incur such expenditure for the comfort and safety of one public officer.

Members of the committee of aviation speaking during the debate said the committee had not approved that expenditure in the agency’s budget.

Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Fola Akinkuotu reacted to media reports on the circumstances surrounding the procurement of two BMW 760 LI armoured series cars by the agency after the purchase of the armoured vehicles began generating so many reactions from groups and Nigerians alike.

The NCAA D.G. stated that the cars are operational vehicles used in the varied operations of the NCAA including transporting the Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah and aviation-related foreign dignitaries.

He also said the purchase of the two cars which cost N255m followed due process and the NCAA remains focused on enforcing standards and promoting safety in line with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).