ICAO Conducts ROST Assistance Mission for AGA

The Western and Central African Region Office of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)
has conducted a Regional Office Safety Team Assistance Mission for Aerodromes and Ground Aids
(AGA) in readiness for the Certification of the Freetown International Airport (FNA).

The five-day activity will review the established regulatory framework, procedures, manuals, and review
the implementation of the Corrective Action Plan (CAP) by the joint analysis of the Protocol Questions
(PQs) from the previous safety audit. A visit to the airport is part of the activities during this event.

The key focus of the ROST Mission is to assist Sierra Leone improve on its Universal Safety Oversight
Audit Programme’s (USOAP) Effective Implementation (EI) in the Aerodrome and Ground Aids (AGA)
the department through a review of the implementation of the USOAP Corrective Action Plan (CAP), and
a discussion on the preparatory activities for the certification of the Freetown International Airport

In his welcome statement, the Director-General of Sierra Leone Civil Aviation Authority Moses Tiffa Baio
expressed his appreciation to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) for its numerous
supports to the SLCAA, particularly the Safe Fund which was designed to improve on the State’s
deficiencies and the Comprehensive Regional Implementation Plan for Aviation Safety in Africa (AFI)
project to certify the Freetown International Airport.

Underscoring the importance of the ROST Mission, the Director-General recalled having a meeting with
the ICAO AGA expert for Western and Central African Region during the Global Aviation Safety Plan
Workshop in Dakar. The meeting was organized to discuss his visit to Sierra Leone in a bid to assess
the implementation of the ICAO Safe Project and also the State’s level of preparedness for the
Certification of the Freetown International Airport. He requested that the ROST Mission should also
consider the Air Navigation Services department as they are part of the certification process.

“The Certification of the Freetown International Airport (FNA) serves as an integral part of the National
Agenda and part of the performance contract signed by the Minister of Transport and Aviation. This
demonstrates the level of State commitment to ensuring its success. Last year, the SLCAA requested for
the conduction of Airport Excellence in Safety (APEX) Review and we did receive the interim report. The
APEX review was regarded as the preparation stage through which we assessed ourselves and decided
on a path leading to the certification process. I assure you of the SLCAA’s 100% commitment to
ensuring the objective of the mission is achieved,” he said.

The ICAO expert on Aerodrome and Ground Aids (AGA) for Western and Central African Region
(WACAF), Mr. Manzi Meheza noted that their willingness on the side of the SLCAA to improve the
State’s Oversight System, adding further that the mission would mainly focus on the implementation
aspect because it is a key criterion to improve on the next safety audit result.

He noted that many States successfully had certified the aerodromes after the ROST Assistance
Mission. While stressing on the much needed political commitment to achieve the desired result, he
mentioned that if Sierra Leone certifies the Freetown International Airport and put measures to
implement a comprehensive surveillance programme, then the State is sure of scoring high.