CAS tasks officers on enhanced safety culture in NAF’

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The Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar, has tasked all safety officers of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) to ensure enhanced safety culture in all NAF activities or operations.

Abubakar gave the charge at the NAF Safety Review Board Meeting on Tuesday in Abuja.

He said that the actions or inactions of all NAF personnel could either help to propel or break the accident chain sometimes experienced in the course of NAF activities or operations.

The CAS also called for the emplacement of appropriate actions to break the accident chain, so as to enshrine a good safety culture that transcends all levels in the NAF.

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According to him, it is vital that they thoroughly examine all the safety issues arising from this meeting and come up with objective and innovative ideas that would enhance safety in the NAF.

“While we all know that safety is a collective responsibility, this board is primarily accountable for safety administration in the NAF.

“Accidents are the results of a sequence of events, beginning with deliberate decisions taken and NAF cannot afford to pay lip service to issues relating to safety.

Abubakar said that the NAF regarded safety as one of its core functions and reiterated commitment to developing, implementing, and reviewing policies to ensure that all activities were conducted in a safe and conducive environment.

According to him, NAF will intensify efforts to enhance safety as it continues its transformation into, “an agile and resilient force that effectively meets the airpower demands of national security in all operational environments”.

He gave assurance that more interesting and auspicious days were ahead for the NAF in view of the Federal Government’s commitment to equipping it with modern platforms.

According to him, the need for a proactive and enhanced safety culture is thus critical in ensuring that their usage are maximised.

The Chief of Standards and Evaluation, AVM Micheal Onyebashi,  said the board, being the apex body of the NAF Safety Management Structure, organised  the biannual meeting.

He explained that the biannual meeting was to deliberate on major policy, resource allocation and regulatory issues relating to safety.

Onyebashi said that the board was required to give direction and guidelines that would ensure the entrenchment of a healthy safety culture in the NAF.

According to him, the NAF has since commenced the introduction of safety education at all NAF entry points and training institutions as directed in the last safety board review.

He said the board also leveraged the online learning infrastructure at the Air Warfare Centre, to sustain an appreciable level of safety education across the NAF.

Onyebashi said there was need for the board, commands and units to work assiduously to ensure that safety standards were maintained in all NAF activities, especially with the induction of additional platforms.

He urged the board to proffer strategies and ideas that would enable the NAF to experience continuous improvement in safety in all its operations.

A paper titled, “Senior Managers’ Role in Organisational Safety Management System”, was delivered by Dr Iteke Chukwunonso of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

Chukwunonso said that managing safety entailed  managing risks and reactively, proactively and predictively controlling risks to an acceptable level.

He added that safety management should have a business-like approach and be woven into the fabrics of an organisation until it becomes a part of their culture.

He commended the NAF for its exceptional safety standards and called on its leadership to continue to retain the responsibility and accountability for safety.

Chukwunonso also emphasised the need for NAF leadership to promote open reporting through non-punitive disciplinary policies while encouraging incentives for promoting safety. (NAN)

By Sumaila Ogbaje

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