Gains, strides under your leadership extraordinary, ex-NTSB boss, Jones, writes Olateru

  • Condoles agency chief over mother’s death


The retired Managing Director of the United States National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Mr. Dennis Jones has lauded the giant strides of Nigeria’s Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) for its tremendous role in the improvement of air safety in the country.

Jones in a letter he personally sent to Commissioner, AIB, Akin Olateru, and made available to Aviation Metric described the gains made by the AIB under Olateru’s leadership as extraordinary if not altogether unprecedented.

He noted that the organisation has become a world-class and premiere accident investigation organization worthy of global recognition for its contribution to aviation safety and as an exemplary model of being an enterprising government agency.

L-R. Commissioner/CEO Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), Engr. Akin Olateru with the Chairman, of the National Transportation Safety Bureau (NTSB), Robert L. Sumwalt, and former Managing Director of NTSB, Mr. Dennis Jones at the headquarters of NTSB, Washington DC, United States of America during Olateru’s recent official visit to NTSB

He further stated that he had been interacting with the AIB and all of its previous iterations since 2002 when the organization was dubbed as AIPB during which he interfaced extensively with all the agency’s predecessors during that period some of which featured major catastrophic accidents.

His words, “As such, I can confidently say that the gains and strides made by AIB under your leadership have been extraordinary, if not altogether unprecedented and consequently the organization has become a world-class and premiere accident investigation organization worthy of global recognition for its contribution to aviation safety and as an exemplary model of being an enterprising government agency”.

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The growth, expansion, and modernisation of the AIB, including the building structures, the launch of the training center, modernization, compilation of competent and professional staff, connectivity to cyberspace through a prominent website combined with the admirable use of apps and social media along with interacting with the mainstream media he admitted had been fabulous.

The foreign assistance by AIB, he reiterated provided in the acceptance and successful completion of a delegated investigation which he noted has not gone unnoticed internationally and marks a shining achievement.

“In your role as a leader and visionary, you have clearly distinguished yourself to be in the upper echelon of luminaries in the aviation safety community and beyond.  You undoubtedly have demonstrated the character, skill sets, and acumen to achieve greatness, if such has not already occurred, in whatever future endeavors you choose.  The Nigerian government and public have been well-served during your stellar tenure at the helm of AIB”.

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He expressed his condolence for the personal loss that the AIB boss experienced concerning the death of his mother last month, adding that his sympathy along with his thoughts and prayers were with him and the family during this difficult time.

“I am sure that your achievements as a person and gallant contributor to society were gifts to the world by your mother that filled her with tremendous pride and were highlights of her life.”

The former NTSB boss expressed his deepest appreciation and gratitude to Olateru, an aircraft engineer, and the AIB staff for the overall positive experience associated with his participation in the Banjul Accord Group Accident Investigation Agency (BAGAIA) programme that took place from November 14-18, 2022.

The administering of the details of the travel and lodging arrangements, including the visa issuance, airport facilitation, and exceptional support throughout the programme he stated were sensational; all of which he said made his visit rewarding and momentous.

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“I would like to give special commendations to Niji Oni and Ekua Sagoe for their planning and preparatory actions that all transpired toward my successful stay in Abuja and pleasurable participation in the programme.  In summary, the aspects and experience exceeded the contractual agreement of which I am especially grateful”.

The Federal Government, it would be recalled repealed the Accident Investigation Bureau – Nigeria (AIB-N) Act 2006 and replaced it with the Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB) Act 2022. President Muhammadu Buhari assented to the new Act last week.


With this, the nomenclature of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in AIB-N has changed from Commissioner to Director-General, NSIB.

Also, NSIB is now responsible for the investigation of air, marine, rail, and other modes of transportation serious incidents and accidents in Nigeria and anywhere the country’s interest is affected.

Wole Shadare