Aviation Chief Quits After MH370 Report Highlights Failure By KLIA Air Traffic Controller

He expressed sadness over having to leave.

Azharuddin Abdul Rahman has tendered his resignation as the Chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM) following a Safety Investigation Report on the missing MH370 which highlighted failures by Kuala Lumpur Air Traffic Control Centre

Image via CGTNOfficial

Azharuddin's resignation will take effect on 14 August

In a statement, Azharuddin said that the long-awaited report which was released on Monday had highlighted lapses by air traffic control in complying with standing operating procedures - without suggesting they were to blame for the loss of MH370.

"While the report does not suggest that the accident is caused by the Department of Civil Aviation then, nevertheless, there are some very apparent findings with regards to the operations of the KL Air Traffic Control Centre; where it was stated that the Air Traffic Controller did not comply with the Standard Operating Procedures.

"Therefore, it is with regret and after much thought and contemplation that I have decided to resign as the chairman of Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia effective fourteen (14) days from the date of the resignation notice which I have served today," read the statement released by Azharuddin on Tuesday, 31 July.

Azharuddin, while adding that he tried his level best to assist in the search for MH370, expressed sadness over having to leave

"Over the past four years, I have tried my level best to assist in the search for MH370 and I am ever resolute in finding answers we all seek towards this unfortunate tragedy as we owe it to the families and loved ones," the CAAM Chairman said.

"I am saddened to have to leave under these circumstances," Azharuddin added.

"Serving the industry for more than 40 years has been the greatest honour of my life and I apologise for not being able to fulfil the remainder of my tenure. Aviation has been a core part of my life since childhood and it will remain so for the rest of my life."

Azharuddin Abdul Rahman.

Image via REUTERS/Sadiq Asyraf

Meanwhile, Transport Minister Anthony Loke has instructed for a special committee to study the report and make recommendations on further actions to be taken against the air traffic controllers

"The MH370 report stated that there was a breach of standard operating procedures, so action must be taken. However, it is complicated because at the time, air traffic controllers were under the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) but now they are under the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM)," Loke said, adding that the committee would be set up under the secretary-general, reported The Star Online.

However, the Transport Minister declined to reveal who all are going to be in the committee. He also declined to reveal the number of ATCs involved in not following SOP during the disappearance of MH370 in March 2014.

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