Business News of Tuesday, 8 August 2017
The reconstituted Governing Board of the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) has been inaugurated, with a charge on them to support the ongoing initiatives in the sector to achieve government’s vision for the sector.
The Board, is chaired by Air Commodore Rexford G.M Acquah (Rtd), and comprises Mr Simon C.M Allotey-Director General of the GCAA, Group Captain Eric Agyen-Fremppong-Ministry of Defence, Mr Ellis Hugh-Tamakloe-Ministry of Aviation, Mr Kwasi Owusu-Ansah, Mr Powis Deakens Spencer, Dr Sulemana Abdulai, Mrs Ernestina Swatson Eshun and Ms Joyce Opoku Boateng, the President’s nominees.
Ms Cecilia Dapaah, Minister of Aviation, who administered the official oath and the oath of secretary to the members on Tuesday, said government and the Ministry’s vision was to establish the Kotoka International Airport as an aviation hub in the West African sub-region and to position Ghana as the preferred destination of choice for travellers.
Giving her inaugural speech, she noted that the GCAA, established under the PNDC Law 151, 1986, to regulate the aviation sector and provide air navigation services within the Accra Flight Information Region (FIR), had a critical role to play in the achievement of that vision.
She said functions of the GCAA “put an enormous responsibility” on the Board to “give direction and express advice to management of the GCAA in the performance of their work”, adding that the President Nana Akufo- Addo expected them to work with diligence and seriousness in order to fulfil government’s agenda.
Ms Dapaah said the Board must support initiatives like the decoupling of the air navigation services from aviation regulation in line with international best practices as well as ensure the scheduled completion of the new Air Navigation Services Centre, which was crucial for the decoupling.
The GCAA, which currently provides both regulation and air navigation services for the aviation sector in Ghana and the Accra FIR, is undergoing a process that will see the separation of those two duties. This is expected to allow the GCAA to more effectively regulate the industry.
She also stressed the need for partnership with the private sector to provide modern and attractive aviation infrastructure, to build capacity and establish the required institutional and policy framework to enhance safety and security of air services in the Accra FIR.
“We are committed to giving you all the support to enable you offer your best to fulfil government agenda,” she stated.
Air Commodore Rexford G.M Acquah (Rtd), new Chair of the GCAA Board, thanked President Akuffo Addo for the opportunity to serve the country and pledged the Board’s commitment to work hard to help the Ministry attain its objectives.
“We further pledge to do our best to improve on the scope and quality of the aviation services within the sub-region and also ensure that the GCAA and its management maintains the highest standards of safety and security in the provision of air transport in the country,” he added.
Mr Simon Allotey, Director General of the GCAA, in an interview with the GNA, said the Board would have its inaugural meeting where they will be briefed on the state of affairs at the Authority to enable them to deliver their mandate of providing broad policy directions and ensuring the implementation of those policies.
He said the completing the decoupling process will be one of the key focus area for the new board, which is currently being given the needed attention and focus.
Others included the acquisition and installation of modern air navigation equipment as well as human resource capacity building programmes.
Mr Allotey said once the committee working on the decoupling process finished their work, it will be reviewed by various bodies, including the GCAA management and Board, and an independent consultant, but maintained “there’s no rush”.