Malaysiakini Letter

Look at the real issues in CAAM and Mavcom

TK Chua

LETTER | Recently, THE  Malaysia Aviation Commission (Mavcom) and the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM) are very much in the news. Should they merge to form a single entity or should they remain separate?

I am no expert in aviation regulations, but certainly we can learn and observe what other countries, especially those more efficient and effective than us, are doing in terms of air safety and regulations.

Whether we care to admit or not, we love to create layers and layers of bureaucracies but in terms of performance, the impact is very minimal, in fact, at times even negative. The US Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) move to downgrade Malaysia’s aviation regulatory body is the case in point.

We form new organisations but care very little of the adequacy and competency of our professional staff on the ground. We only care who should be appointed chairpersons and members of the board and the amount they draw each month. Was this not the case of Mavcom in the past?

The worse is when a new layer bureaucracy was created, the first thing we did was to introduce new levies on the aviation industry to pay for its upkeep.

Sometimes I think we are just pretending to do something. Why is there a need to reinvent the wheel, so to speak?

Does Singapore have an aviation commission? As far as I know, it only has CAAS, the Civil Aviation of Singapore, which is a statutory body under its ministry of transport.

As far as I know, CAAS does everything – ensuring safety and efficient air traffic flow, developing the aviation industry, and oversee contingency and crisis situation. 

CAAS performs both safety regulation and airport economic regulation. They do not talk aimlessly about checks and balances and separation of power.

For goodness' sake, we must separate the wheat from the chaff. I think we are the masters in pretenses. We use fake arguments to justify our own personal interests while the real job of regulating the aviation industry is left undone.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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