Namibia lacks skilled air navigation service personnel

02 May 2019 17:40pm
WINDHOEK, 02 MAY (NAMPA) - A lack of skilled personnel in the Namibia Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA)'s air navigation service has resulted in pressure on current staff.
This was said by the air navigation service (ANS) department’s General Manager Peter Marais when the NCAA handed over bursaries to 22 students here on Thursday.
The department, which is a stand alone unit of the NCAA, is responsible for services like aeronautical information management and communication and navigation surveillance.
Marais said lack of skilled personnel places undue strain on available staff to maintain service at the required levels.
“The skills required at ANS are not readily available in the Namibian labour market and as a result, the NCAA took a decision to recruit and train Namibian nationals in the disciplines required to address the shortage,” he said.
The ANS bursary programme will run for three years at a cost of more than N.dollars 12 million and will see beneficiaries trained to amongst others become air traffic controllers, aeronautical information officers and air traffic safety electronics personnel.
Marais said of the 22 beneficiaries, 10 will be studying to become air traffic controllers, six aeronautical information officers and six air traffic safety electronics personnel.
He added that the bursary programme is the first step on their path to becoming aviation professionals whose knowledge and skills will make them key participants in the Namibian regional and aviation industry.
“The beneficiaries, upon completion of their studies, will be providing safe, expeditious and regular air navigation services which are required,” said Marais.
Teopolina Nantinda, who plans to study air traffic safety electronics, told Nampa this is a great opportunity for her.
“I am determined to study hard toward my career of choice as I couldn’t do it without this bursary,” said Nantinda.
Another beneficiary, Tangeni Kwedhi, who wants to become an air traffic controller, said he is happy to have been chosen considering the number of people who applied for the same opportunity.
“I couldn’t afford to pay for these studies without financial assistance,” Kwedhi said.