Works Minister introduces Civil Aviation Bill

11 Jun 2015 15:10pm
WINDHOEK, 11 JUN (NAMPA) – The Minister of Works and Transport Alpheus !Naruseb introduced the Civil Aviation Bill in the National Assembly on Wednesday.
In his introduction of the bill tabled for discussion by Members of Parliament (MPs), he said the bill is a much-needed development for the better governance and development of civil aviation safety and security in Namibia.
“This bill is the culmination of many years of hard work by the ministry following policy directives on the future direction and management of the civil aviation administration function by Cabinet,” !Naruseb stated.
Outlining some of the features of the Civil Aviation Bill and further explaining why it is important that it be enacted at the earliest opportunity, the minister said the current Aviation Act of 1962 is more than half-a-century old and thus long overdue for revision.
He made it clear that whilst it draws on models used elsewhere in the world, it is observant of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) model Act but is first and foremost directed at serving the needs of the Namibian people.
Some of the key features include the establishment of a standalone Namibia Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) in the place of the current Directorate of Civil Aviation.
“The new NCAA will be autonomous in accordance with best international practices and, in fact, with express SADC regional protocols regarding the development of the transport sector,” the minister said.
The idea is that the NCAA will eventually be self-funding.
!Naruseb added that one of the mechanisms will be the power to obtain funds by the imposition of fees and levying of funds upon users of the aviation service industry.
As the NCAA starts operations, it will have the benefit of a sum of about N.dollars 400 million, which has been accruing over the years in a separate aviation navigation funds account from fees charged by Namibia to operators of aircraft that fly over the country, he explained.
The bill also provides for a director to be appointed by the Board of the NCAA with the concurrence of the minister.
The director will be given a comprehensive and up-to-date set of powers for the regulation of the industry and for the issue of aviation documents in the interest of public safety and security.