The Government and private institutions in the aviation industry have been urged to set aside more resources to guarantee the safety of passengers who travel by air this in the wake of numerous aircraft mishaps within the Kenya airspace in the past 22 months.
Eyob Estifanos, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Associate Regional Programme Officer also said there is a need to train the youth to bring in fresh blood in the industry.
Kenya’s airspace safety is ranked 67th globally and 7th in Africa after South Africa, Mauritania, Togo, Egypt, Gambia and Madagascar.
Eyob Estifanos, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Associate Regional Programme Officer said that while the general safety of the country’s aviation industry comes under intense scrutiny, the country is above the internationally recommended aircraft safety standards of above 65 per cent.
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Speaking at Juja Preparatory Schools in Kiambu County during their aviation day, Estifanos said that while there is a challenge everywhere, ICAO continues to promote safety both locally and internationally and Kenya is among the countries that have been compliant to the recommended standards.
He made the remarks only a day after a Fly540 aircraft was forced to make an emergency landing in Lokichar, Turkana County after it developed mechanical problems.
The plane that had 49 passengers and five crew members was headed to Nairobi when the incident occurred at Kapese Airstrip on Friday morning.
He warned that should control measures not be taken, the industry will miss professional technicians, pilots, industry managers thereby causing a crisis.
Estifanos lauded the initiatives that the country has taken to bridge the gap by introducing young learners in the aviation industry.
According to Dr Richard Muigai, Chairman, Juja Preparatory Schools, there are many unexplored opportunities in the industry that the institution was encouraging young learners to pursue.
He said that the institution has nurtured many students who have achieved their dreams of becoming professionals in the industry most of who are working for various airlines across the globe.