Apr 25, 2017: International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has confirmed its support for a new Declaration on the Improvement of Search and Rescue (SAR) services in Africa.

Adopted during the recent High-level Conference on SAR in Africa which convened in Lomé, Togo, the new agreement will be implemented in part under a separate Plan of Action adopted by the participating States’ Ministers.

The event was hosted by the Government of Togo with support from ICAO and the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC).

Dr Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, president, ICAO Council, said, “The provision of effective SAR services entails the mobilisation of essential State assets, and requires substantial financial commitments by your governments. Additionally, assets of neighbouring States and other international organisations are most likely to be involved in SAR missions, requiring the approval of high-level authorities.”

“The ICAO ‘No Country Left Behind’ initiative is specifically aimed at ensuring that international standards are implemented in a harmonious manner in all member States so that they all have equal access to the socio-economic benefits of aviation. We are here to help you with these challenges, and our Regional Offices stand ready to consult with you on the most practical means forward to the required assistance and capacity building.”

H. E. Faure Gnassingbé, president of Togo, agreed to champion regional progress on SAR issues. Dr Aliu highlighted that Togo’s engagement was consistent with the significant commitment and regional leadership the State has already demonstrated in terms of aviation infrastructure development and ICAO compliance.

Dr Aliu also met with various other Ministers as well as Directors-General of Civil Aviation in attendance at the Conference and visited the newly completed passenger terminal at Gnassingbe Eyadema International Airport.

Photo: Dr Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, President, ICAO Council with H. E. Faure Gnassingbé, President of Togo.