OPINION: Airport Security Drill Violates ICAO Regulations


By Makeda Mikael

Antigua Barbuda AIrport Security and Antigua Broadcasting Services has done a grave injustice to Aviation and Airport Security in general, by the publication on the internet of the playbook on crowd storming the airport, through its least secure gate on privately owned land.

Clearly someone at the highest level of Airport Security has failed to understand that publication of ways and means of breaching high security areas and establishments like airports is not publicized.

For this reason if none other the Airport Security Drill is not just a failure, but the breach of Private Operations properties without their permission, thereby invalidating their insurance, and is unacceptable and has raised legal issues.

Compounding this breach is the far-reaching violation of exposing how and where to commit the crime of storming the VCBIA.

Had consultations with the stakeholders taken place, as the airport is expected to do once other independent properties are involved, the violations would have been avoided, by enlightenment from the two owners whose properties were violated by negative security exposure.

Considering the youth crime wave which Antigua is going through, it was a serious slap in the face of airport operators to see on TV the gang of youth thugs storming the gates of the private owners, in an attempt to get onto the airport ramp.

What messages are ABAA & ABS sending to the young and restless on the streets looking for new criminal excitement.

Serious Security Personnel are aware of what to publish and what to retain from public consumption which could damage industry, personnel and the country at large.

It is clear that the upper echelons of Antigua’s National Security needs to pull in the Airport Security Director for training and protocol in administering Airport Security.

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  1. About ICAO

    ICAO is funded and directed by 193 national governments to support their diplomacy and cooperation in air transport as signatory states to the Chicago Convention (1944).

    Its core function is to maintain an administrative and expert Secretariat of international civil servants supporting these diplomatic interactions, and to research new air transport policy and standardization innovations as directed and endorsed by governments through the ICAO Assembly, or by the ICAO Council which the assembly elects.

  2. Not a global regulator

    The stipulations ICAO standards contain never supersede the primacy of national regulatory requirements. It is always the local, national regulations which are enforced in, and by, sovereign states, and which must be legally adhered to by air operators making use of applicable airspace and airports.

    Contrary to many dramatic and media portrayals of UN agencies, they do not have any authority over national governments in the areas of international priority they are established for. Critiques of the UN are often rooted in allegations founded on fantastical capabilities and authorities which sovereign states would never assign to a multilateral organization.

    ICAO is therefore not an international aviation regulator, just as INTERPOL is not an international police force. We cannot arbitrarily close or restrict a country’s airspace, shut down routes, or condemn airports or airlines for poor safety performance or customer service.

    Should a country transgress a given international standard adopted through our organization, ICAO’s function in such circumstances, consistent with our core diplomatic capabilities and role, is to help countries conduct any discussions, condemnations, sanctions, etc., they may wish to pursue, consistent with the Chicago Convention and the Articles and Annexes it contains under international law.

  3. When Ken Hurst was the CEO of the Airport Authority, he constantly pointed out to the Stanford Group the danger of having the Gate at Runway 10, open to staff and other private individuals. For that reason, everyone that entered the premises had to go through security, although it was his own security, nevertheless they did their job and registered everyone that entered and provided them with an airport pass. Security was very strict, and the Airport Security came by quite often to check if the Stanford Group violated any protocols.

    Fast forward, Makeda Mikael takes over control of the property. We see that the perimeter fence was suddenly withdrawn and brought closer to the runway. A very risky move, which to this day I cannot understand, has been approved by the Airport Authority. Given such a close distance from the private Jets is a grave security concern. A private individual that can drive his car on to this part of the property and God knows with bad intention can cause a big upset. The reason why parking is not allowed in front of an airport is the same as being able to park so close to a private jet.
    And then the DCA allowed Makeda to erect a restaurant on the premises. That completely blows my mind. I mean talking about ICAO regulations, this would be a big NO NO. Even when COLORS holds their annual fete across the road and the Stanford Jetty, it is considered to be a huge security risk for the airport. That property in my opinion now is such a big risk for smuggling of all sorts of contraband. It’s about time the Airport Authority stopped playing around with our airport ratings and closed these security risks without fear or favor to anyone. But only in the very interests of our country. We just cannot afford to be down graded and lose airlines and private jets coming to our beloved country.

  4. Perhaps author you would prefer american style, 90 percent ineffective stand in line to be violated “airport security”.

  5. Dear paid jackass (you know who you are) caught up with the skirt that ignored your advances, whom you like to call by name, please realize that there are educated people in Antigua who can challenge you and your paymaster.
    Aviation on an International airport is neither domestic nor local and as international it must abide rigorously by ICAO rules.
    Your support for the leader is surely leading our country to hell where a place awaits him, and you!

  6. As a pilot myself in the ‘states I can testify that ICAO FORCED changes in many areas of general aviation, some of the more ludicrous: all US airport identifiers have to be preceded bu the letter “K”. This of course is because there are so many “K’s in words United States. Weather conditions changed to the idiotic; hail used to be identified as “HA”, now the identifier is “GR”. Fog has been eliminated and is now called “mist” identified as “BR” in ICAO formatted weather forcasts.
    ICAO also decided for the rest of world that English was to be the official language of aviation.
    @Sideline – I’d suggest you purchase some Loctite, you have a couple screws loose.

  7. It seems all these so-called educated fools have an issue with what GOOGLE has on their search engine. Cause I haven’t added anything to the post that Google provided. But strange enough none of them commented on the case I made that the airport is running the risk of being downgraded since some in authority have allowed Makeda to re-draw the airport perimeter fence and bring it in closer proximity to the public. Something I indicated was not possible under the leadership of Ken Hurst, who ensured that Stanford had strict control over who was allowed to enter the airport compound. A restaurant where anyone can come and go just cannot be that closed to private jets. That is a big security risk. Given today’s terroristic environment, one can place a car bomb in the parking lot. There are no security personnel at that gate. It is true that at present the restaurant is closed. But that is because of bad management. The PM should question the Board of the ABAA about who gave Makeda the authority to erect a restaurant on the airport grounds and re-draw the perimeter fence. Sir Robin may have to answer that.

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