Parliament on Friday, March 8, 2019, passed into law, subject to the assent of the President, an amendment of the Ghana Civil Aviation Act 906 (2016) to further improve safety and strengthen security in the aviation industry of the country.
In a statement from the Aviation Ministry, the Minister for Aviation, Joseph Kofi Adda noted that the amendment is to ensure that Ghana is compliant with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards.
He said, “the aviation sector is already doing well by global standards and is ranking highly but this amendment is to further take into consideration, deficiencies identified in various assessments of the structures and operational systems of air navigation services and the effective implementation of the state safety programmes and accidents investigations.”
This is expected to lead to the setting up an independent outfit under the Minister for the Accidents and Serious Incidents investigations in the sector.
The amendment would also make provision for the funding of the independent outfit to ensure effective work by its personnel.
The powers of the Director General of GCAA would also be enhanced to allow for access for accidents investigations and for information as well as to be able to prevent flights by unqualified personnel.
The decoupling of the GCAA, segregating the regulatory function and navigation services provision would be undertaken based on this amendment.
With this, a new outfit for the Air Navigation Services would be established under the amendment if assented into law by the President.
Following this current amendment, the Aviation Ministry would pursue additional regulations that would be passed early enough for an audit by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) later this month.
In sum, the amendment has a far reaching significance in terms of Ghana’s rating improving and bringing the country into the Category 1 Status to qualify under the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for Ghanaian flights to enter into the United States of America.
In recent times there have been major initiatives such as infrastructural projects and systems enhancements which combined with this legislation, in all gears up the nation to become the aviation hub in the sub region.
By Joshua Amlanu