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Olateru Solicits AIB-N Staff Cooperation to Achieve Greater Success

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The commissioner/chief executive officer of the Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria (AIB-N), Mr. Akin Olateru has charged staff to be diligent, conscientious and professional in their conduct in order to carry out the mandate of the agency.

Addressing the staff from the bureau’s headquarters in Abuja via zoom, Olateru said cooperation, diligence, conscientiousness and professionalism are essential tools needed to achieve the agency’s mandate of investigating aircraft accidents and serious incidents.

“It has been an honour to work with you all over the last four years, and I look forward to the next four years with great expectations for how much more we will achieve together. I invite you now to look back on the last four years, at the events, the challenges, our successes and aspirations and work with me to continue the path of innovation and strategic development.

“We must continue to deliver on our mandate with the highest standards of professionalism as we always have, and to continue to grow thereon.”

He assured that his administration would continue to innovate and establish the AIB-N even further, to align with the best in class globally.

“I plan to improve our infrastructure and equipment, strengthen our human capital, further simplify our processes, and eliminate bottlenecks in our procedures, making AIB a highly reputable institution,” he added.

On his recent reappointment, Olateru expressed his gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari “for the trust and confidence reposed in me to continue to lead the AIB.”

He said he was humbled by the progress that has been achieved at AIB-N since he assumed office in 2017.

“I am even more humbled by the recognition and acknowledgement of these achievements by our honourable minister, my colleagues, staff, and the media,” he added.

Olateru did not forget to appreciate the staff and management of the agency for their continuous hard work and professionalism in ensuring the Bureau fulfils its mandate.

“In the last four years, with your help, hard work and commitment, we have taken the Agency from relative obscurity to its rightful place.

“We improved our infrastructure, equipment, human capital, and staff welfare.  We also reviewed and improved our systems, processes and procedures.

“I am very proud of what we have achieved, and I hope that you can all take pride in your individual and collective contributions to realising this feat,” he said.

He also appreciated the media for helping to spotlight the important work AIB-N does by effectively communicating how critically important the bureau’s work impacts safety in the aviation industry.

It would be recalled that Olateru’s tenure as commissioner between January 2017 and January 2021, witnessed the release of 40 final reports on accidents and serious incidents and  three safety bulletins.

This, represents a 67.8 per cent of the total final reports released by the bureau since it was established in 2007.

Within the period, the agency also issued 130 safety recommendations representing 61.6 percent of the total safety recommendations issued by the bureau.

Also during the period, the bureau’s infrastructural facilities, such as the bureau’s flight safety laboratory in Abuja and Lagos, wreckage hangar, metallurgical science laboratory, regional offices in Enugu and Kano states, and the command and control center, were developed and rehabilitated to enhance efficiency.

Besides, the Olateru administration initiated collaboration and cooperation agreements with several countries and institutions such as the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Singapore Transport Safety Investigation Bureau (TSIB), Bureau d’Enquêtes et d’Analyses pour la sécurité de l’aviation civile (BEA- France), the Instituto Nacional De Aviaco Civil (National Civil Aviation Authority) of Sao Tome & Principe, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF), University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) and University of Lagos (UNILAG), while the cooperation agreements between Saudi Arabia, Republic of Benin and Niger Republic are in the process.

In order to keep the public informed on the critical role it plays in the success of an accident investigation body, AIB-N, in the last four years, embarked on several public advocacy activities and launched social media handles on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn

The Bureau also launched the AIB-N Nigeria mobile app in November 2017, to help ease the process of reporting air accidents and serious incidents, and enhancing eyewitness reporting by the public.

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Aviation

Private Jets Operating Commercial Services to Lose Licences – NCAA DG

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The Acting Director-General of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Chris Najomo has warned that all private jet operators operating commercial charter services risks loosing their licenses.

He gave the warning in Lagos on Friday during the media unveiling of his vision board for year 2024 tagged NCAA Project 2024.

The Ag.DG, who expressed concern over the illicit activities of illegal private jet operators in the country, said if private jets wants to operate as commercial or charter operators, they should apply for the commercial licences.

Highlighting the regulatory provisions, Najomo noted that only holders of Air Transport Licence (ATL) and Airline Operating Permit (AOP) with a valid Air Operator Certificate (AOC) are authorized to conduct charter operations.

He also stated that NCAA will cease offering services to all debtors, who have refused to payment the NCAA and federal government monies owed them, noting that almost all airlines are guilty of this.
Nigerian airlines are currently indeed to NCAA in billions of naira.

He also said the NCAA is committed towards simplified certification and licensing processes as this will ensure ease of doing business.

Najomo further stated that one of his 2024 projects is to Ensure improved staff welfare, training, retraining and reorientation of staff.

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Aviation

NDLEA Arraigns SAHCO Manager, 7 Staff For Aiding Drug Trafficking

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An Assistant General Manager of Skyway Handling Company (SAHCO), Olajide Ahmed Kafidipe, and seven other staff of the company, were today, arraigned before a Lagos Federal High Court, on charges bordering of conspiracy, unlawful importation and possession of 1, 440.90 kilograms of Tramadol.

Olajide and others were arraigned before the court presided over by Justice Deinde Isaac Dipeolu, by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

The seven staff of the company arraigned alongside Olajide were; Sanyaolu Rasheed Oladele; Musa Mutalib Opeyemi; Sanamo Alla Daniel; Anuge Evans Isibor; Mahmud Agboola Musa; Udeh Felix and Obinna Henry.

The prosecutor, Mr. Abu Ibrahim, while arraigning the SAHCO staff, told the court that all the defendants conspired with the trio of Mubarak Sarki Salami, Abdullahi Aliyu a.k.a Aboki and Anwal Monday, who also staff of the company but now at large, to commit the offences on or about October 25, 2023.

The prosecutor, Mr. Ibrahim further told the court that the Assistant General Manager of SAHCO, Olajide and other staff of the company, conspired amongst yourself to transport 1, 440.90 kilograms of Tramadol 225mg, a Narcotic, from SAHCO Import Shed.

The prosecutor also told the court that the SAHCO’s Assistant General Manager, Olajide, conspired with Sanyaolu Rasheed Oladele, and procured one Lawal Itunu Temitope, to transport the prohibited substance from SAHCO Import Shed in a Mercedes Benz Bus with Registration Number LAGOS MUS 269 YC, belonging to Platinum Pacific International Limited.

He further informed the court that another staff of SAHCO, Sanyaolu Rasheed Oladele, unlawfully possessed the said 1, 440. 90 kilograms of Tramadol 225mg, a Narcotic Analgesic.

The prosecutor told the court that the offences committed by the defendants, contravened sections 14 (b), 21 (2)(d) and 20 (1)(c) of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Cap. N30, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004. And punishable under sections 11 (b) and 20 (2)(b) of the same Act.

All the defendants denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Following their not guilty plea, the prosecutor asked the court for a trial date and also urged the court to remand them in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Services (NCoS), till the hearing and determination of the charge.

However, lawyers to the defendants, told the court that they have filed their clients’ bail application except that of the Assistant General Manager, Kafidipe Ahmed Olajide and Obinna Henry.

The lawyer therefore asked the court for a short date, to enable them file the bail applications for the duo.

With the development, the prosecutor, Mr. Abu Ibrahim, urged the court to remand all the defendants in NCoS’ custody till when the court will hear their bail applications.

But the trial judge, Justice Dipeolu, in his reasoning, order the operatives of the NDLEA to call their Airport Commander, to allow the defendants to be remanded in their custody till tomorrow, January 17, when their bail applications will be heard and determined.

Upon the complied with the court’s directive, which was granted by the Commander, the court ordered the remand of all the defendants in NDLEA till tomorrow, while adjourned to January 24, 2024, for the commencement of their trial.
Source: Ontimenews.com

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Tinubu Sacks Heads of Aviation Agencies, Asks EFCC to Investigate NCAA’s Financial Transactions

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In a move that has caught stakeholders in the Aviation sector unawares, President Bola Tinubu has approved the suspension, removal, and replacement of Chief Executive Officers under the Federal Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development

The Special Adviser to the President Media & Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale who made this known in a statement on Wednesday, said the leadership change is in line with the President’s determination to bring world class standards to Nigerian Civil Aviation in consumer protection and the promotion of the wellbeing of Nigerian passengers and other sectoral stakeholders.

Ngelale announced that the Managing Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr. Kabir Yusuf Mohammed has been removed from office and replaced with Mrs. Olubunmi Oluwaseun Kuku as the substantive Managing Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria.

Also, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Mr. Tayib Adetunji Odunowo has been removed from office and replaced with Engr. Umar Ahmed Farouk as the substantive Managing Director of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency.

The Director-General of the Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB), Engr. Akinola Olateru has been removed from office and replaced with Mr. Alex Badeh Jr. as the substantive Director-General of the Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau.

The Director-General of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Prof. Mansur Bako Matazu has been removed from office and replaced with Prof. Charles Anosike as the substantive Director-General of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency.

He further noted that the Rector of the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Capt. Alkali Mahmud Modibbo has been removed from office and replaced with Mr. Joseph Shaka Imalighwe as the Acting Rector of the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), pending the appointment of a substantive Rector, in accordance with Section 13(2) of the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology Act, 2022.

Meanwhile, Ngelale announced that the Director-General of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Musa Shuaibu Nuhu has been suspended from office to enable the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to conduct an unfettered investigation into the activities of the suspended Director-General and other senior officials in the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, adding that Capt. Chris Najomo assumes office as the Acting Director-General of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority immediately.

“Furthermore, President Bola Tinubu approves the commencement of a diligent process to be conducted by the Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development to recruit a substantive Vice-Chancellor and other principal officers of the African Aviation and Aerospace University (AAAU).

“The President anticipates that the new leadership across this critical sector will uphold the safety, convenience, and comfort of the Nigerian people as primary and sacrosanct in all of their administrative activities.

“Due to the high cost of underperformance in the sector, the President demands the immediate establishment of world-class policy design, implementation, and regulatory frameworks to reposition the sector in alignment with his Renewed Hope Agenda.

“All of the above-mentioned directives of the President take immediate effect”, he concluded

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