Aviation experts in Africa stress transparency, accountability in sustaining businesses in the sector

Aviation consultant, Dr. Daniel Young and DG NCAA Capt. Musa Nuhu at the CEO’s Forum

African aviation leaders have called for concerted efforts by government and stakeholders in influencing the practice of corporate governance for a sustainable sector.

At a virtual and physical Aviation Leadership CEO’s Forum,with the Theme: ‘Corporate governance Structure: A pathway to sustainability in African Aviation’, the leaders hinged the lack of good corporate governance practice to the short life span of aviation businesses especially the airlines.

It is the belief of many aviation stakeholders that a one man show business that lacks transparency and accountability is bound to run into troubled waters and fail without achieving its goals.

The reason for this according to them especially with the airlines is failure to practice good corporate governance that had pushed the continent into eleven consecutive years of non- profitability of carriers in the region.

Ethiopian Minister of Transport, Dagmawit Mogues says, the sustainability of the industry was dependant on transparency and accountability.

“For  the  success  of  an  African  airliner  transparency,  accountability,  and  security  are  critical  ingredients.    All  these  are  important  to  form  solid  professional  relationships  among  the  aviation  sector  stakeholders which include board directors, managers, employees, and shareholders”.

A stakeholder, Sindy Foster said, the absence of Corporate governance had dragged the industry back from reaching its full potential.

“Because why some airlines have boards, they have not adopted all the the corporate governance examples which had been shown to work in high performing airlines”.

Aviation consultant, Dr Daniel Young and convener of the forum, Mr. Toni Ukachukwu stressed that, no significant development can be made in aviation when one man dictates the rules, in full control of decision making without checks and balances.

“Appointing your family members as members of board of Directors doesn’t take anyone anywhere, no one goes anywhere with that”.This approach of leadership, fuels unethical practices, fraud, indiscipline, and unaccountability, contributes to low span life of airlines in Africa”. 

Director General, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, Captain Musa Nuhu says, as the regulatory body of the industry in Nigeria, it may be difficulty to eliminate the airline owner-manager syndrome.

He however explained that, once the civil aviation Act is passed by the National Assembly, there would be room to address the issue of corporate governance in the regulations to resolve some of these challenges.

“And the industry too has to look at and so self regulation to a certain level, we need industry professional bodies to come up with their guidelines, business ethics and how to run the businesses. For us In the regulatory body we have requirements”.

The Secretary-General, African Airlines Association (AFRAA), Abdrahmane Berthe called on African airlines to work together through codeshare and interline and urged governments to have a well thought out, holistic, and rationalised aviation policies that ensure sustainability of aviation infrastructure.

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