The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Monday said Nigeria had attained another high level of safety rating which had placed it amongst the world leaders in aviation safety.
The NCAA disclosed this in a statement signed by its General Manager, Public Relations, Mr Sam Adurogboye, and made available to newsmen in Lagos.
The statement said the country had climbed to Level 3 State Safety Programme (SSP) Implementation Process, and be on the same rating with the United States of America, United Kingdom and other countries in this echelon.
“This categorisation is dependent on the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), who tracks the SSP implementation process of member-states via its Integrated Safety Trend Analysis and Reporting System (iSTARS).
“Member states in tandem, therefore, deploy this platform to undertake Gap Analysis, define their action plans and benchmark their progress.
“Only two member states-Australia and Sri Lanka- have achieved full implementation of the SSP according to ICAO records. Nigeria is striving to achieve Level 4 which will be 100 per cent by the end 0f 2017,” it said.
According to the statement, the SSP process is inaugurated in member countries in compliance with the ICAO requirements as contained in Annex 19 on Safety Management.
The statement said that Nigeria’s advanced level had put its SSP implementation process amongst states that had defined an action plan for all non-implemented Gap questions.
It said that Nigeria had completed its Gap Analysis, implemented 43.6 per cent of the required SSP tasks.
The statement said: “In addition, the country has developed a detailed action plan for the accomplishment of the outstanding tasks with an established and approved timeline.
“In pursuant to the above, Nigeria has commenced the implementation of the SSP processes and has achieved several milestones.
“These include the completion of the SSP Gap Analysis and the establishment of the Implementation Plan approved by the Director-General (DG) of NCAA.
“Other completed SSP tasks are the official authorisation of the D-G of NCAA as the Accountable Executive of the SSP and the designation of the NCAA as the Placeholder Organisation of the SSP in Nigeria by the Minister of State (Aviation), Sen. Hadi Sirika.”
It said the approval and publication of the State Safety Policy Statement, the Enforcement Policy in an SSP-SMS environment including Nigeria’s Voluntary and Confidential Reporting System etc, were among the tasks that had been concluded.
According to the statement, the ICAO Aviation Safety Plan (GASP) has recognised the relevance of establishing and maintaining fundamental safety oversight systems as a prerequisite to the full implementation of an SSP.
The statement said: “Member – states with robust safety oversight system have been called upon to progress towards full implementation of SSP.
“An SSP is an integrated set of regulations and activities aimed at improving aviation safety which will be monitored through Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) Continuous Monitoring Approach (CMA) after such a state has achieved an Effective Implementation (EI) of over 60 per cent.
“It is required that states that have achieved EI levels of over 60 per cent should endeavour to fully implement SSP by 2019.
“Nigeria achieved an EI Level of 67.36 per cent during the immediate past ICAO USOAP Audit in March 2016 which is above world average of 63.54 per cent. ”
It noted that with this achievement, the NCAA would continue to ensure that air transportation in Nigeria was seamless, safe and secure at all times.
It, therefore, urged airline operators to take advantage of the robust regulation and adhere to all safety regulations as contained in the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs).