The leadership and key contributions of Kenya and Senegal to the African aviation sector were at the center of the recent bilateral meetings between ICAO Secretary General Juan Carlos Salazar and Mr. James Macharia, Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for Transport (pictured above), and Mr. Alioune Sarr, Minister for Tourism and traffic of Senegal.
The meetings took place during the Secretary-General’s recent mission to the host countries of the ICAO Regional Office for Africa, December 13-17, 2021, with a particular focus on current priorities to accelerate flight connectivity restoration through the implementation of the ICAO Council Aviation Recovery Taskforce (CART). Recommendations and exploration of possibilities to improve the presence and support of the ICAO member states in both regions.
Kenya and Senegal also host the United Nations’ regional offices for Africa, positioning their governments as key partners in efforts to promote ICAO / UN aviation goals and sustainable development. In recognition of the longstanding commitment of the governments to drive regional progress in the air transport sector, Salazar called for continued and intensified regional cooperation under the leadership of Kenya and Senegal. In addition, plans for special ICAO facilities in Nairobi and Senegal were discussed with the host governments and representatives of the United Nations.
These points were also emphasized during a series of supportive meetings with 12 Civil Aviation Directors-General from ICAO East and South Africa (ESAF) and a bilateral meeting with the Director-General of the Senegalese National Civil Aviation and Meteorology Agency, Mr. Sidy Gueye. Secretary-General Salazar also held discussions on this with representatives of the leadership of the Agency for the Safety of Air Navigation in Africa and Madagascar (ASECNA) and the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC).
The meetings of Mr. Salazar with the Director General of the UN Office in Nairobi, Ms. Zainab Hawa Bangura, and the Resident Coordinator of the UN system in Senegal, Mr. Siaka Coulibaly, resulted in agreements to intensify regional cooperation within the UN system. Another meeting with Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director of UN-Habitat, focused specifically on improving the contribution of airports to sustainable development.
The Secretary-General’s activities in Africa also included visits to the Regional Offices East and South Africa (ESAF) and West and Central Africa (WACAF), supported by Regional Directors Barry Kashambo and Prosper Zo’o Minto’o, respectively.