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Communiqué of the 8th IFATSEA Africa Regional Meeting

August 8th, 2018



The IFATSEA Region Africa Affiliates congregated in Nairobi for a three-day regional meeting and conference. The theme for the conference was “Aviation Safety and Security – ATSEPs Contributions” The meeting was aimed at bringing together ATSEPs in Africa and the aviation industry professionals to assess ATSEPs contributions to Aviation Safety and Security and discuss relevant topics necessary to enhancing ATSEPs and industry professional ethics in upholding safety and security at all levels.
The meeting had in attendance the Director General of the Kenyan Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA), Capt. Gilbert Kibe, the Deputy Director General (Technical) of the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) Ing Charles Ebo Kraikue, the Interim IFATSEA President, Mr. Thorsten Wehe, the IFATSEA Region Africa Director, Ing Frank Kofi Apeagyei, and the President of the Kenyan Air Traffic Systems Engineering Association (KATSEA) Eng. Robert Jere Omusonga, all of whom delivered opening speeches and remarks.
The conference was officially declared opened by the Minister of Transport, Honourable James W. Macharia after which the Director of the Air Navigation Services of Kenya, Ms Charity Musila delivered an address. Mr. Thorsten Wehe, The IFATSEA Interim President had the onerous duty of delivering the keynote address.
The meeting witnessed an attendance of one hundred and twenty-eight (128). The affiliate countries present were Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda, Mali (FACATEM), and Ethiopia.
High-level presentations on various topics were presented which was followed by an orderly panel discussions and exhaustive interactions with the participants. The main topics that characterized the various presentations included the following;
 Evolving Roles and Responsibilities of ATSEP
 ATSEPs as Engineering Professionals
 ATSEPs in Maintenance operations
 ATSEPs Safety appraisals in Air Navigation Services
 ATSEP recognition in ICAO Annex1
 Regulating ATSEPs operations; safety and security factors
 ATSEPs in system development
 ATSEP licensing implementation; legal and regulatory framework
 ATSEP training
 Operationalization of ATSEP state licensing; gains and challenges
Closed session with only the affiliates was held to discuss IFATSEA 2018 General Assembly, which will take place 5th to 9th November 2018 in Hammamet and is being hosted by Tunisia, and formulate a strategy towards ICAO 39th General Assembly in 2019. The meeting also considered ways of ensuring maximum attendance by all the registered affiliates in the region and also ways to increase the membership. The meeting accepted the apologies of Burkina Faso for their inability to participate in the meeting and conference.
Participants at the conference observed that:
1. This conference is an annual event for assembling the Affiliates in the region, industry professionals and experts to share experiences, brainstorm, discuss relevant technical matters, network and exchange technical information aimed at improving technical know-how and service delivery.
2. The delivery format of the workshop included thirty-one (31) lead presentations followed by exhaustive discussions by the participants. The following lead presentations were made:
I. ATSEPs; Key drivers in air navigation services
II. ATSEP roles and responsibilities beyond ATC console
III. Contributions of engineering technologists and technicians to safety
IV. users of technology; opportunities, challenges, risks and mitigations
V. The licensed engineer; ethics, roles and responsibilities that enhance security and safety
VI. Safety and security considerations in;
VII. Communication systems, Navigation systems, Surveillance systems
VIII. And Auxiliary Systems
IX. ATSEPs contributions to safety in;
X. Air traffic control services, Aeronautical information services, Aeronautical communication services
XI. CAAs preparations for ICAO general assembly 2019.
XII. CANSO Africa support for ATSEPs
XIII. ATSEP contributions to ICAO strategic goals and ASBU
XIV. Presentation of a safety case for ATSEPS at ICAO general assembly 2019
XV. Historical Path to ATSEP licensing
XVI. Aviation regulators’ perspective of ATSEPs as contributors in safety and security services
XVII. ATSEPs contribution to airport safety and security
XVIII. Human factors in ATSEP operations; Safety and security considerations
XIX. SMS and risk management in ATSEP operations; implementation, opportunities and challenges
XX. CNS equipment development and integrity; value added facilities for safety and security
XXI. ATSEP licensing; ANSPs opportunities and challenges
XXII. Incorporating ATSEP licensing in state PEL CAA Regulations
XXIII. ATSEP regulations vrs statutory engineering regulations; conflicts and harmonization.
XXIV. Curriculum development assessment and certification challenges in Africa
XXV. ATSEP competence-based training and assessment in Africa; implementation, opportunities and challenges
XXVI. Aligning ATSEP training with emerging technologies in aviation industry
XXVII. Capacity development plan in aviation training; production of high skilled ATSEP instructors and assessors
XXVIII. Operationalization of ATSEPS state licensing; gains and challenges.

Following the discussions and interactions, therefore, we the participants at the plenary of the IFATSEA Region Africa conference adopt the following resolutions:
1. CAAs and ANSPs should as a matter of urgency, make use of ICAO doc 10057 and 1007 for ATSEPs and CNS inspectors respectively to invest and build their capacity through effective relevant training to the highest standard of their profession as a way of improving their competencies and service delivery to maintain safety and security.
2. We recognize that some CAAs/ANSPs are already implementing ATSEP licensing to assure proof of competence, safety and security of the ATM/CNS systems, operations, monitoring and maintenance in accordance with 1.5 of ATSEP ICAO doc 10057. However, there still remain a number of ATSEPs in some ANSPs/CAAs yet to legitimize ICAO doc 10057 and article 32 of the Chicago Convention. Therefore we call on such ANSPs/CAAs to give meaning to these important documents by implementing ATSEP licensing schemes in order for the Safety regulator to effectively audit and regulate the ATSEP ATM/ CNS job activities.
3. The omission of ATSEP license in ICAO Annex1 does not veto states/ CAAs/ANSPs from establishing standards and requirement in their regulations to include ATSEP licensing and filing the differences with ICAO. Hence IFATSEA encourages states/CAAs/ANSPs to implement ATSEP license for the following reasons;
 safety and security reasons
 proof of competency for both ANSP and regulator
 ongoing and continuing automation of the ATC functions
 technology and emerging trends
 direct support and decision-making data to the aircraft/Pilots
 cross border activities or state –to-state technical systems intervention
 capacity building
 standards harmonization

4. States should adopt best practices and liaise with IFATSEA to assist states/CAAs/ANSPs with ATSEP licensing implementation templates and promote safety and security within the aviation industry.
5. We encourage States/CAAs in Africa to support IFATSEA to address the challenges regarding ATSEP recognition in ICAO Annex1 with paper presentations at ICAO 40th General Assembly in 2019.
6. We the ATSEPs in Africa recognize the importance of a common African approach towards ATSEP recognition in ICAO Annex1 and therefore seek the support of AFCAC to present a common paper on ATSEP recognition in ICAO Annex1 at next year’s ICAO 40th General Assembly.
7. Finally, we are grateful to the conference/meeting organizers, the Director General -KCAA, presenters, KCAA and KATSEA for their wonderful hospitality.

Frank Kofi Apeagyei, IFATSEA Africa Regional Director

Thorsten Wehe, IFATSEA President

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