The Director-General of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Captain Musa Shuaibu Nuhu says Nigeria is fully preparing for the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) and Continuous Monitoring Approach (CMA) slated for the first quarter of 2022.
Captain Musa Nuhu said Nigeria would continue to excel in the existing regime of robust regulations and over eight-year of zero accidents in commercial flight operation and appealed to aviation stakeholders to support NCAA to ensure a successful audit.
The NCAA boss who was represented by Mr. Lulufa Vongtua, Assistant General Manager DATR, Kaduna Regional Office of NCAA, stated this in a speech he delivered at the opening ceremony of the League of Aviation and Airport Correspondents (LAAC) training at the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT) in Zaria, Kaduna State on Monday, January 10, 2022.
Captain Nuhu who said continuous human capacity development is one of his administration’s core values described the role of the media in the development of the sector as critical and charged aviation correspondents to always cross-check their reports before going to the press.
“As a matter of fact, continuous human capacity development is one of my administration core values. For us at the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), we consider training (including initial, on-the-job and recurrent training) as a key component of aviation development in Nigeria. In actual fact, training and retraining is a capital project for us as it is critical to our operations as the country’s apex regulatory authority for civil aviation in Nigeria. Our personnel is exposed to appropriate training all over the world so as to maintain and enhance their competence.
“On the other hand, you will agree with me that the media is critical to the growth of global aviation. The press is the Fourth Estate of the Realm. In other words, the fourth arm of government. This reference was derived from both the explicit capacity of advocacy and the implicit ability to report issues. You have been with us in this journey and you have been worthy partners. Every success story about aviation in Nigeria cannot be written without the contributions of all of you.
“The media, particularly LAAC has provided a platform which has helped in projecting activities and laudable achievements of NCAA to the public vis-à-vis our oversight functions. Your day-to-day reportage has shown that most of you have a deep knowledge of aviation and its goings-on.
“We want to inform Nigerians that preparations for International civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) Continuous Monitoring Approach (CMA) slated for the first quarter of 2022 are in top gear and that we are fully prepared for the impending audits. On the heels of the pro-activeness, an existing regime of robust regulations and over eight-year of zero accidents in commercial flight operation, we are primed to excel again.
“Therefore, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) appeals to all stakeholders including the media to join hands with us to ensure a successful audit this year. From now on, all your reports are very sensitive. Let us eschew sensationalism capable of putting the nation in a bad light. Therefore, I will advise anyone to endeavour to verify and confirm his/her stories before publishing, if in doubt. It is my view that your watchdog role plays a very important part in fostering stability in the industry,” said Nuhu.
Acknowledging the support of the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika and the National Assembly Committee on Aviation to NCAA on its oversight responsibilities, Nuhu thanked the Rector of NCAT, Captain Moddibo Alkali Mahmud for a good job of ensuring NCAT retains its attractiveness as the regional training centre of excellence.
Earlier in his address, the Chairman of LAAC, Mr. Segun Koiki said the global aviation industry in 2021 restarted with fresh hopes after the devastating effect of the pandemic which grounded to a halt the world’s economies, saying that as the world gradually began to show re-bounce, the pandemic came with various variants with the latest being Omicron.
“The outbreak of Omicron once again led to global panic and discriminatory border closures, visa regimes and Covid-19 protocols, which unsettled growth the world over, thereby, negatively affecting air travel. Thanks to medical research as airports have been opening up in phases, albeit gradually.
“Surprisingly, Nigeria’s aviation industry has since the beginning of 2021 commenced a reawakening with speed. More local airlines have received Air Operators’ Certificates (AOCs) from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and over 10 AOCs are still being processed according to Capt. Musa Nuhu, the Director-General of NCAA.
“The vision of investment in airports in the form of concessions is being piloted by the Federal Ministry of aviation. Passenger traffic is picking up. The critical place of training in the sector has increased and by implication, created more opportunities for NCAT to harvest the ripe field of training adventures,” said Koiki who thanked the management of NCAA for the training.