Garowe (PP News Desk) — The President of Puntland State Said Abdullahi Deni argued that the decision to move air traffic control to Mogadishu had been rushed without an agreement between Somali stakeholders.

He cited the recent air travel restrictions on Jubaland as the evidence that Nairobi should have remained the headquarters of Somalia’s air traffic control centre.

President Deni was at the Forum for Ideas question and answer session in Garowe.

President Deni favours a collective decision-making process for Somalia’s air traffic control centre in Mogadishu.

The previous Somali Federal Government of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud negotiated and started the transfer process.

The air traffic control centre is based in Mogadishu where the Federal Government of Somalia has been able to enforce air traffic restrictions for political and safety reasons.

Last year the Federal Government of Somalia placed temporary air traffic restrictions on Jubaland following parallel presidential elections in Kismayo.

Only a national government has the legal right to make decisions on air traffic restrictions.

The agreement envisaged by the Puntland State President would saddle the Somali Federal Government with the obligation to seek clearance from Federal Member States whenever it is about to make aviation-related decisions.

In 2018, the Somaliland Administration demanded joint management of Somalia’s air traffic control centre in the capital city of Somalia despite claiming to have unilaterally seceded from Somalia in 1991.

This article first appeared in the © Puntland Post, 2020 and is republished with permission.

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