Airworthiness Director Must Have Done FAA, ICAO Courses—Demuren, Ex NCAA Boss
The former Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Dr. Harold Demuren has stated that for anybody to be appointed the Director of Airworthiness and Standards (DAWS), he must have done Airworthiness, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Courses and that of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
The person, he said must also be current with the latest issues as it concern airworthiness and standards.
This is just as he warned the Federal Government to be weary of those it appoints as Director General and Directors in NCAA in view of the role the regulatory body play in the aviation industry
Demuren’s comment is coming on the heels of complaints in some quarters and threat by aviation unions to ground the industry if the appointment of DAWS, Engr Ita Awak was not reversed.
The ex Director General of NCAA said this while speaking on the topic NCAA Autonomy And Safety Compliance as the Guest Speaker at the Aviation Safety Round Table Initiative (ASRTI) Quarter March 2017, Breakfast Meeting at Golfview Hotel and Suite, Lagos
He explained that some many people have called him on the said appointment, adding that he told them that he does not know the person but that his attention was later drawn to the fact that he attended the Nigeria College of Aviation Technology (NCAT).
The former DG Of NCAA contended that if for any reason ICAO or FAA wants to audit Nigeria aviation today , the credentials of DAWS would be looked at .
According to him, ”The man who is going to issue aircraft airworthiness certificate must know what he is doing. You don’t learn on the job or table .He must be strong, competent and efficient.”
He continued, “Has he done Airworthiness Courses, FAA and other courses? Outside Nigeria in ICAO and other international aviation gatherings, he is going to lead groups and this must be done professionally. If you do audit today on Nigeria aviation, they are going to look at the credential of DAWS.”
Demuren called on the Federal Government to be very careful when appointing people as Director General of NCAA and directors of other directorates that have something to do with safety in view of the politics that goes on .
He added that ministers would come and tell them to do things that negates safety but if the persons in-charge know what they are doing , they should be able to tell the minister it cannot be done in the interest of safety.
To buttress his point ,he cited a situation ,where a former minister, whose name he did not mentioned brought to him 200 people in one day that he must employ in NCAA and that 15 of these people were from the said minister’s place.
He added that he refused because if anything happens, he would be held responsible and not the minister, as the minister is a politician.
“If I employ them and if anything happens, who takes responsibility .You must continue to explain to government why they must look at issues from the other side. NCAA DG is the spokesman of the Nigerian aviation industry and must be bold to say no to issues that will negate safety” He advised.
He also shared with the gathering how during his tenure as Director General , a Minister of Aviation told him to issue Air Operator’s Certificate(AOC),when he knows that the person involve is not qualified.
He stated that when he refused to issue the certificate, the Minister said, “just issue it ,I will hide it.”
On the autonomy of the NCAA, Demuren said, ”NCAA has to fight for the autonomy .If your directors are there for political reasons, there is no way they can fight for the autonomy of the regulatory body.
The ex—NCAA helmsman advised that economic regulations should be taken away from the regulatory body so that it can face squarely safety regulation.