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The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has concluded its audit on Azman Airlines. The report is damning and one that shows that the carrier serially violated safety procedure leading to its grounding more than two months ago.
A report of the audit, dated April 2, 2021, signed by the Director-General of NCAA, Capt. Musa Nuhu stated that the airline was found not to be in compliance with the provisions of Nigerian CARs 184.108.40.206 (a) and (e) with regards to provision of resources and discharge of the duties of the Accountable Manager of the airline.
According to the audit report, This- _is evidenced by complete non-staffing of the Safety Management Department and staffing of the Quality Management Department with only one officer, thereby making it impossible to effectively implement Safety and Quality Management Systems functions as required by Nig.CARs 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168, respectively.
The Accountable Manager exhibited a lack of understanding of his duties and responsibilities as contained in the Operations Manuals. This is further evidenced by lack of evidence of the Accountable Manager’s involvement in Management Reviews of Quality Audit Findings.
“This is evidenced by the fact that FDR analysis on the B737 (eg 5N-SYS) revealed a number of exceedance,s and the DFO could not show any evidence of actions taken to check the trend.
“This is further evidenced by lack of demonstration of knowledge of the Nig. CARs related to Flight Data Analysis and Flight Operations Management in general. Thirdly, this is evidenced by lack of safety officer(s) in the flight operations department to support the Flight Data Analysis Programme (Nig.CARs 22.214.171.124).
According to the audit report, the DFO exhibited a lack of understanding of his duties and responsibilities as contained in the Operations Manuals. Fourthly, there is evidence of poor safety culture promoted by absence of evidence of concrete action on clear safety violations by flight crew, eg, failure to make required entries in the technical log.
Azman was found not to be in compliance with the provisions of Nig.CARs 126.96.36.199 (e) (2) and (3)(i) with regards to discharge of the duties of the Chief Pilot, thereby unable to maintain safe commercial flight operations:
“This is evidenced by the fact that the Chief Pilot did not know that some of his pilots were overdue for SMS, CRM training, etc, and were not making technical log entries and signing voyage reports as required by Nig.CARs 188.8.131.52.”
The Chief Pilot exhibited a lack of understanding of his duties and responsibilities as contained in the Operations Manuals.
Azman, according to the manual, was found not to be in compliance with the provisions of Nig.CARs 184.108.40.206 (e) (2) with regards to discharge of the duties of the Director of Maintenance to maintain safe commercial flight operations: evidenced by the fact that the Director of Maintenance, who was granted a temporary acceptance by the Authority to act in this capacity for six(6) months ( expiring on 22nd March,2021) demonstrated complete lack of knowledge of Nig.CARs and approved Maintenance Control Manual procedures and therefore Azman Air ceased to have a DOM after 22nd March,2021.
The DOM also failed to ensure that approved Maintenance Control Manual Procedures are effectively implemented which led to numerous safety critical non-conformities including lack of access to maintenance data by the engineers in Abuja ; lack of effective tool control (eg use of bogus pressure gauge with incorrect calibration certificate in Abuja)
Also ineffective monitoring of tire wear; overdue engineers training in Human Factors; outdated B737 Approved Maintenance Programme; duty time limitation exceedance; ineffective monitoring of maintenance by the DOM as he is located in Kano instead of the approved maintenance base in Lagos
Azman Air Ltd was found not to be in compliance with the Nig.CARs 220.127.116.11, with respect to provision of current Operations Manual to officers involved in operational control. This is evidenced by Azman’s inability to provide a current copy of the Company’s Emergency Response Plan ( this is a repeat finding ) as required by Nig.CAR 18.104.22.168(g)(7)
Azman was found not to be in compliance with Nig.CAR 22.214.171.124 regarding Flight Safety Programme. This is evidenced by the fact that, though, Azman Air has a robust flight data monitoring system arrangement with Flight Technics, who constantly furnish Azman Air with flight data reports, these reports stop at reception with no further actions to address unsafe issues captured.
The airline was found not to be in compliance with the provisions of Nig.CARs 126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52, relating to Safety Management System establishment
This is evidenced by lack of a Safety Manager or Safety Officers to run the Safety Management System. Lack of this has also resulted in poor management of Flight Data Monitoring Reports for safety improvements
The report also stated that Azman Air Ltd was found to be in violation of Nig.CARs 18.10.3 regarding the submission of monthly financial health reports to the NCAA.
“This is evidenced in Azman Air’s failure to meet up with the monthly obligation in submitting the required financial health report for months despite several reminders. Last submission was in July, 2020. During this audit, Azman submitted reports for December ,2020 and January 2021.
Azman Air Ltd was also found to be in violation of Section 12 (1) of Civil Aviation Act, 2006 as regards to non remittance of 5% TSC/CSC. This is evidenced by the airline being indebted to the Authority to the tune of One billion Five Hundred and Forty Five million, Two hundred and Sixty Two thousand One hundred and Twenty naira, Thirty One kobo (N1,545,262,120.31) as at December, 2020.
Sequel to the above, Azman Air Ltd was found to be in violation of Nig.CARs 18.12.6 as regards to signing an agreement with the Authority for direct debit. This is evidenced by delay in signing of the Direct Debit Tripartite Agreement with NCAA.