Professionals in Nigeria’s aviation industry have called for automation and a better management of aeronautical information services in the country.
Speaking at the 2019 Delegates Conference of Aeronautical Information Management Association of Nigeria (AIMAN), the Director General of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Usman Muthar said non automation of Aeronautical Information Service (AIS) “has led to loss of revenue by the both the AIS provider and the airline operators and dissuaded potential investors in the aviation industry as well increasing ATCO’s work load.”
He said “the importance of aeronautical information management in ensuring safety and regularity of flight operations in the aviation industry cannot be overestimated. Automation being the bed rock of AIM ensures high efficiency and effectiveness of data management, thereby eliminating the consequences and disadvantages associated with AIS manual operations which is currently the practice in Nigeria.”
ICAO Annex 15, Chapter 3.5.1 stipulates that States shall apply automation in order to ensure the quality, efficiency, cost-effectiveness and timeliness of aeronautical information services. Furthermore, the Nig.CARs Part 18.104.22.168 reiterates that the AIS provider certificate holder shall introduce automation in AIS systems with the objective of improving the timeliness, quality, efficiency and cost effectiveness of aeronautical information services.
Muthar said at the conference themed “Benefit Of Automation In Aeronautical Information Management” that from the regulator’s records, “the AIS provider is yet to comply with the above requirements.”
The General Manager, Aeronautical Information Service (AIS) in the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Kabir Yahaya-Gusau in his presentation, requested for “the serious intervention of the Federal Government and NAMA management towards ensuring the establishment of Quality Management System (QMS) for AIS/AIM Nigeria which is a basic requirement by ICAO. The implementation of QMS for AIS/AIM is a leadway to safety and lots of economic benefits. The intent of QMS is to provide a quality management framework for AIS/AIM to comply with ISO 9000 applicable requirements control of processes, minimize risk and ultimately satisfy AIS/AIM products and services as well as user needs and expectations.”
“A key benefit of automation to AIM at this critical juncture is the ability to automate the save and recovery systems to ensure protection from the potential disaster of disk loss or inadvertent damage to system object from human error. With that capability, the AIM system would enjoy uninterrupted availability even in a networked environment,” said Pwajok Mathew Lawrence, Director of Operations, NAMA.