Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah has declared that Nigeria must rise up to the challenge posed by the Dana Plane crash to realize its vision of being a world class provider of safe, secure and comfortable air transport that is self-sustaining and pivotal to socio-economic growth.
Inaugurating the technical and administrative review panel on domestic airlines on Monday in Abuja, Oduah noted that the nation must remain strongly resolved to achieve her mission of transformation the aviation sector.
She said: “This is why we have set up this panel to thoroughly examine the entire system and recommend necessary action that will enable us achieve these goals. To the members of this panel, I will like to reiterate that you have been selected in recognition of your experience, professional and personal integrity. In carrying out your assignment, you are therefore expected to live up the expectation of Nigerians”.
The Minister stated that the June 3 Dana Airlines Crash was one of the worst crashes in the country that claimed 153 lives and other persons in the residential area.
She said the government is taking actions geared the total revitalization of domestic airlines operations in Nigeria. The Minister noted that the Minister of Finance and the Nigerian Customs authorities are working towards reducing the import tariffs on aircraft spare parts.
The Minister listed the following as the terms of reference of the committee:
- Thoroughly review the maintenance practices of Dana Airline as well as other domestic scheduled operators and assess their level of compliance with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations.
- Assess the effectiveness or otherwise of NCAA’s oversight of the maintenance practices of domestic scheduled carriers and other regulatory aspects.
- Examine the management practices and safety culture existing in Dana Air and other domestic scheduled operators.
- Make bold recommendations to the Federal Government on all of the reference terms above with a view to closing existing gaps that could lead to a reoccurrence of such an accident in future.
- Make any other recommendation that is relevant to the review.
Oduah said that the committee has six weeks to submit its report.
Responding, chairman of the committee, Group Captain Obakpolor (rtd) said that the panel would work towards answering the questions that have been plaguing the Aviation Sector. He called for a free hand for the committee to make its findings and recommendations.
The nine member panel has the leverage to invite technocrats to assist it in carrying out its assignment.
The full list is as follows: Group Captain Obakpolor (chairman), Capt Mfon Udom(member), Capt Dele Sasegbon (member), Capt Austin Omame (member), Barr. O.O. Agboola (member), Engr F. Onyeyiri (member), Capt A. Mshelia (member), Air Commodore Samson Akpasa (member) and Dr Anthony Anuforom (member/secretary).