Posted by Sade Williams
Engr. Akin Olateru, the Commissioner, Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has been honoured with the award of the ‘Exceptional Leadership Award in Aviation Accident Investigation and Prevention.’
The award was given to Olaeru by the Transportation and Tourism Industries Combined Summit and Expo at the Tourism Transport Summit and Expo 2019, held Wednesday in Abuja.
Mr. Rotimi Amaechi and Sen. Hadi Sirika, the Ministers of Transportation and Minister of State for Aviation, respectively were also among the dignitaries awarded at the event.
The organisers said that Olateru was recognised for his ability to instill changes in the Nigerian aviation industry since his appointment about two years ago.
The organisers declared that through the bureau’s safety recommendations, AIB had been able to contribute its quota to improved air safety in Nigeria, stressing that its activities had gone beyond the shores of the continent to Europe and America.
Recalled that Olateru at a press briefing last week at its Safety House at the Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA), Lagos, disclosed that the agency had released a total of 46 final reports and 178 safety recommendation since the inception of the agency.
He further stated that AIB had released a total of 27 final reports since January 2017 when he came onboard, which represents 58.79 per cent of the 46 final reports released since inception in 2007.
Also, AIB has issued 97 safety recommendations since 2017, which accounted for 54.5 per cent of the total 178 issued since inception.
The organisers said: “Olateru was nominated for this prestigious award because of his activities since he was appointed the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at AIB. He has brought vigour and exceptional leadership skills to bear since he came onboard. This only goes to show that if the right people are appointed to manage our affairs, we will attain our goals.”
In his remarks, Olateru lauded the organisers for recognising his activities and that of his team since he came onboard.
He assured that the award would spur him and his entire team to do more for the agency, the industry and Nigeria as a whole.
He said: “I thank God and the organisers for the award. It is a landmark achievement for me as a person. It’s been a tough period. It has not been an easy one, but I thank God for all we have been able to achieve within the period. Something very critical is that you should believe in yourself, be strong and you need to be bold. With God on your side, you will achieve.
“One thing I promised when I came onboard in January 2017 was that I will make AIB the envy of others in the sector. With the help of God, we have reached that stage. We have done a lot of infrastructural development, equipment and human capital.”
He also commended Sen. Hadi Sirika, the Minister of State for Aviation for his support for the bureau.
Besides, Wole Shadare of the New Telegraph newspaper was awarded ‘Aviation Industry Reporter of the Year, ‘ at the event.