The Accident Investigation Bureau-Nigeria, AIB-N, and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, are both government agencies in a symbiotic relationship in which one of the outcomes is the enviable safety record in the nation’s airspace for about a decade now.
A media statement from the AIB-N and signed by its General Manager, Public Affairs, Mr Tunji Oketunbi, clarified that “AIB-N has a good working relationship with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, and the two agencies are both pursuing the same goal of ensuring a robust Aviation safety regime in the country”
The statement further refuted the seemingly misinterpretations and innuendos that NCAA might have fallen short in its responsibilities for not executing “an immediate Safety Recommendation issued on 4th February 2019, in the Preliminary Report on the serious incident involving Azman Air Boeing 737-500 of January 3, 2019, which was not actioned by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA)”
According to the media statement by AIB-N, “it is the norm for accident investigation agencies globally to put it in the final reports if the CAA agreed, disagreed or did not implement safety recommendations”.
The statement affirmed that “the portion of the report that stated that ‘No action from NCAA’ was therefore not an attack on the regulatory agency but a standard practice in line with ICAO Annex 13”.
As a means of subtle public education on the statutory responsibilities of both agencies, (AIB-N and NCAA) the statement thus emphasized, “It should be noted that while it is the statutory responsibility of the AIB-N to investigate and make safety recommendations, the Civil Aviation Authority is by law not bound to implement any or all the recommendations where it deems it either unnecessary, time-barred or impracticable to do so”.
It can be recalled that the purpose of the accident investigation report is not to indict any of the dramatis personae involved in the serious incident or accident nor would it be allowed as evidence for legal action in the law courts.
Also, a report of an accident or incident investigation is not to criminalize anyone overtly or covertly involved or deemed by aviation enthusiasts as culpable for homicide or any such action in law courts.
Globally, the aim and objective for investigating serious incidents and accidents are to prevent future reoccurrence of the same accident or incident as the entire industry would have learnt from the earlier report and necessary precautionary measures would have been developed along with the safety recommendation issued to wit and make available at the disposal of industry players all over the world irrespective of the language barrier.
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