The Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria has received the commendation of the National Assembly Joint Committee on Aviation on the giant strides it has recorded in ensuring safer skies in the country through comprehensive investigation.
The Committees, led by Sen. Abiodun Olujimi, Chairman, Senate Committee on Aviation and Hon. Nnolim Nnaji, Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Aviation, gave the commendation during an oversight visit and tour of the Bureaus facilities at its Head office in Abuja.
Hon. Nnaji, who stated that AIB is a very important agency whose investigation have contributed greatly to safety in the aviation sector, said the Bureau has proven that it has great potentials to make a lot of difference as regards safety.
“That is why we got the executive bill with both houses passed and I believe that very soon you will change from AIB to the Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB), said Nnaji
“We are glad you are looking at other areas that would improve the agency. The training school can create jobs and also help the aviation industry,” he added.
While encouraging the Bureau to do more work to ensure continuous safety which will change the dynamics of investigation from investigating more of serious incidents to investigating incidents, Hon.Nnaji assured the Bureau that the Committees would look into how they can think out of the box to support the agency and increase its budget.
Also speaking, Sen. Olujimi commended the Commissioner for his visionary leadership qualities and achievements that have ensured safer skies in Nigeria and pledged the continuous support of the NASS Joint Committee on Aviation for the fulfilment of AIB’s various plans for the improvement and advancement of accident investigation in Nigeria.
Appreciating the NASS Joint Committees for their support, the Commissioner disclosed that the Bureau under his administration has moved from investigating more accidents to investigating more of serious accidents. “Our plan, however, is to move from investigating more of serious incidents to investigating incidents,” he said.
Engr. Olateru also disclosed that the Bureau has five projects, which are currently ongoing.
He added that the projects which include the Bureau’s training school, which is the first of its kind in Africa, is 95 percent completed while the metallurgical laboratory, which was relocated to the Bureau’s office complex is about 80 percent completed.
Engr. Olateru also disclosed that the Bureau is constructing a new head office at the complex and has procured mobile satellite office, which can be used at crash sites by the Air Safety Investigators.
The Commissioner who stated that the Bureau is unable to charge money for investigation, unveiled plans to reevaluate AIB’s operations in order to generate revenue from other sources.
“I want to separate the business of making money from the technical side of accident investigation. For instance, since accidents do not occur regularly and we have the mobile office unused during the intervals, when there are no accidents, we are in talk with the United Nations (UN) on how they can use the mobile office unit when they go to the interior parts of the country, thereby generating income for AIB,” he said.