By Mhirt G/Kirstos
ADDIS ABEBA – Eight Somalians are receiving training in Ethiopia as air traffic controllers as part of their country’s effort to take charge over its airspace.
The number of travelers to and from Somalia has increased in recent years so is the need for expertise for air traffickers.
“It’s like moving A to B,” said Hibo Mohamed Kwlmiye, one of the eight trainers at the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Training Center. “This kind of training is new and basic to us so, we are getting new knowledge and experience.”
Somalia fully took over control of its airspace in December 2017 and transferred air traffic control from Nairobi.
It had been run there by the United Nations International Civil Aviation Organization since the early 1990s Somali civil war.
Hibo said the air traffickers are controlling “only departing flights,” she said. “This training will help to be in control of any flights within our air space”.
The state-run Ethiopia Civil Aviation Training Center is giving the training for eight Somalian air traffic controllers for the first time. It has already previous experience of training experts from Somaliland and Djibouti in a similar area.
Director-General of the center, Wosenyeleh Hunegnaw (col.) said the training will boost the confidence in the air traffic controllers of Somalia.
“This will be the first of many pieces of training that the center will be giving to Somalians,” said Wosenyeleh, who added the neighborly nations have an agreement for that.
Ethiopian Civil Aviation Training center has already been certified by the International Civil Aviation Organization and is the only institute in the country that offers aviation training courses.