The “Safe Skies for Africa Program” was initiated by US President Clinton in 1998. The goals are to improve safety, security and air navigation in sub-Saharan Africa.
The goals are to be achieved by USA assisting selected states and regional organizations in Africa. Namibia is one of the states in the program.
There is also hopes that the program will improve air services between US and Africa to facilitate increased trade, attract investment and grow African tourism industry.
Security is the essential element of the program and one initiative is this. FAA is providing instructors for free in a course for “Safety Management Systems (SMS) theory and application”.
This year FAA provided free SMS training in Johannesburg, South Africa 22 January to 1 February and in Windhoek, Namibia 19 February to 1 March. Next up is in Maputo, Mozambique 19-29 March.
I attended the training in Windhoek where the Directorate of Civil Aviation acted as the host and provided a very good venue at the “Roof of Africa”.
The last day ended with an examination ceremony. Maimuna Taal-Ndure was our master of ceremonies and doing it very well.
There was a speech by the acting Director of Civil Aviation, Ms Angeline Simana-Paulo
From left Ms. Clarissa Renner, FAA course administrator, the Director, yours truly, Mr. Bill Orr, FAA instructor with a background in Air Traffic Control, Mr. Steve Lightner, FAA instructor with a background in the American oil industry and Mr. Alfonso Escobar, the ICAO project coordinator in Namibia and organizer of the SMS training in Windhoek.
Thanks a lot to everyone involved. I had a really good time and I learned a lot!