Ghana Tops Africa in UN Aviation Agency Safety Oversight Assessment
Accra, 6th April, 2019 – Ghana obtained a provisional Effective Implementation (EI) rate of 89.89%, the highest by an African country, after the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) concluded its Coordinated Validation Mission (ICVM) on 3rd April, 2019.
The ICVM was conducted within the framework of the United Nations (UN) specialised aviation agency’s Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP).
Ghana’s rating follows a nine-day onsite activity by a four-member team of experts from ICAO to validate corrective measures undertaken by the country following a USOAP audit in November 2006.
Recognising this landmark achievement by the country, Minister for Aviation, Hon. Joseph Kofi Adda, stressed the need for the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) to immediately develop an action plan towards the implementation of corrective measures that have been recommended by the ICAO team.
“Ghana’s air transport industry enjoys strong government support, which is a crucial determinant for the aviation sector’s ability to maintain an ICAO compliant regulatory framework and to achieve accelerated sustainable growth of the sector in the years ahead,” declared Hon. Adda.
The Minister further underscored that in line with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s vision of re-positioning Ghana as the sub-region’s aviation hub, Parliament recently passed the Ghana Civil Aviation (Amendment) Act, 2019 (Act 985), together with the Legislative Instrument on Aircraft Accident and Serious Incident Regulations, 2019 (LI 2375), to ensure enhanced compliance with ICAO’s Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPS).
The Director-General of GCAA, Ing. Simon Allotey, reaffirmed the Minister’s remarks at a debriefing session on the ICVM, noting that “this enviable milestone is a reflection of the robustness of our safety oversight system which ultimately translates into improved safety of airline operations.”
“By adhering to ICAO’s SARPS related to safety oversight, GCAA effectively ensures that aviation service providers and airline operators maintain an acceptable level of operational safety.”
The ICVM assessed Ghana’s safety oversight system on all eight ICAO Critical Elements (CEs), namely: Primary Aviation Legislation; State Operating Regulations; State Civil Aviation System and Safety Oversight Functions; and Technical Personnel Qualification and Training.
The other CEs included Technical Guidance, Tools and the Provision of Safety-Critical Information; Licensing, Certification, Authorization and Approval Obligations; Surveillance Obligations; and Resolution of Safety Concerns.
The ICAO team also validated the country’s performance in eight Audit Areas: Primary Aviation Legislation and Specific Operating Regulations (LEG): Civil Aviation Organisation (ORG); Aircraft Accident and Incident Investigation (AIG); and Airworthiness of Aircraft (AIR).
The other Audit Areas were Personnel Licensing and Training (PEL); Aircraft Operations (OPS); Aerodromes and Ground Aids (AGA); and Air Navigation Services (ANS).
Ghana recorded a substantial improvement across the eight CEs and Areas, and the team from the UN specialised aviation agency identified no significant safety concerns (SSCs).
“Our performance of 89.89% is world-class and places Ghana at the top spot in Africa in terms of safety oversight, considering that the average EI rate on the continent stands at 52%, which is lower than the global average of 66.5% and below ICAO’s current minimum target of 60%,” Ing. Allotey continued.
The Director-General expressed gratitude to the Ministry of Aviation, the Board of Directors, management, and staff of GCAA for the successful outcome of the ICVM, and to the ICAO team for the professionalism, objectivity and cooperation throughout the process.
Under ICAO rules, the final rating will be communicated to Ghana within six-weeks after validation of the provisional score by the UN specialised aviation agency.
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Created in 1986, GCAA is the regulatory agency for air transport in Ghana. It licenses air transport operations, maintains oversight of aviation safety and security, as well as provides air navigation services within the Accra Flight Information Region (FIR), which comprises the airspace of Ghana and a large area over the Atlantic Ocean in the Gulf of Guinea. It is also responsible for consumer protection and the promotion of the development of Ghana’s air transport sector.