The Director-General of the Liberia Civil Aviation Authority (LCAA), Moses Y. Kollie, has expressed his institution’s commitment to safety and security standards as the institution strives for best international practices in keeping with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards.
Mr. Kollie, in a media engagement on Tuesday, said that the instruction that was authorized by an Act of the Legislature and published into handbills in January 2006, continues to provide safety oversight to aircrafts operations in Liberian airspace as part of measures to guarantee the implementations of the eight Critical Elements (CE) of ICAO which Liberia is no exception.
Mr. Kollie added that the CE include; Aviation Legislation, Specific Operating Regulations, State System and Functions, Qualified Technical Personnel, Technical Guidance, tools and provision of safety-critical information, Licensing, Certification Obligations and/or approval obligations, Surveillance Obligations, as well as Resolution of Safety Issues.
According to Kollie, in 2006, the institution underwent an ICAO Safety Audit taking into account ICAO standards.
He said Liberia’s audit score shows Liberia’s Level of Effective Implementation (EI) to be 19.6%, less than the 60% regional requirements set by ICAO.
“This result prevents the LCAA from registering aircrafts under its authority but rather issuing Air Carrier license aircrafts already registered with Air Operating Certificate (AOC) outside of Liberia,” said Kollie.
Kollie further added that his priority is ensuring the country’s efforts to restore the status of registered aircrafts and that his administration is exerting every necessary effort to make sure that Liberia regains such lost status.
He said that the LCAA is putting in measures that will see the country meet the 60% required by the Intentional Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
Kollie expressed that over the years, different administrations at the LCAA have been working very hard to bridge the nearly forty percent gap but have not been successful.
He disclosed that efforts of all the previous administration together with the present administration can only be measuring of another audit for which his administration is now preparing to be carried out by ICAO in September of this year.
“The audit is not just for the civil aviation authority but rather, for the entire State since the audit result will have direct consequences on the State,” he said.
Kollie said “There are other areas of concern that are not limited to the civil aviation authority but involves some other entities of government including, the Roberts International Airport (RIA), Roberts Flight Information Region (RFIR), and the Ministry of Transport.”
Kollie maintained that the ICAO’s audit represents the only way to accelerate development within the aviation sector adding that, “it will serve as a determinant as to whether Liberia as a State is ready to compete with other States and move the economy of Liberia forward.”
Kollie underscored the need for collaborations in the aviation sector because LACC alone cannot deal with issues involving search and Rescue which is an important component of the institution.
“Search and Rescue,” he said, “involves Maritime, the Ministry of National Defense, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Health, and a host of other organizations connected to aviation.”