The Flagstaff House and the Osu Castle have been declared a ‘no flying enclave’ for airlines in the country.
This was contained in the new Civil Aviation Amendment Act 2016.
Additionally, passengers of domestic airlines who suffer undue delays at the airport can receive up to GH¢16, 000 if they decide to take on the airline, the new act stipulated.
If the airline also causes damage to their luggage without a tangible explanation, they can also earn up to GH¢4,000 in a court suit.
The act also prescribes stiffer punitive measures for airlines that breach the safety regulation of the country.
According to the Director of Legal Services of Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Joyce Thompson, the cost of an accident to the industry is huge and stringent measures are needed to engender deterrence.
She mentioned that they also factored the international airlines into the drafting of their punitive measures.
“Let’s not forget that these penalty units are not just targeting domestic carriers or local persons, we are also looking at offences which are occasioned by international firms and foreign airline. If you want to fine a foreign airline 500 penalty units which is GH¢ 6,000, it does not amount to anything, GH¢6,000 is less than $2,000 so they will not mind continuing the offence because the penalty unit is not much.”
She added that the GCAA is more particular about prevention, “where Civil Aviation is concerned, we want to ensure safety. We do not even want you to commit the offence so we try as much as possible to keep educating people to prevent the offence being committed. Because in the event the offence is committed, it could result in an incident or accident which affects human lives.”
Meanwhile, unruly passengers on board aircraft can receive a maximum sentence of three months in jail. The demolition of unauthorised structures impeding the safety of air navigation in the country would be embarked upon at a cost to the owners of the structures.
Freight forwarders in the aviation section would also be required to seek re-registration from the GCAA to enable them to perform their operations at Ghana’s airports. Hither to, they were being certified only by the Ghana Airport Company Limited.