OPINION

A flawed system?

In the wake of the recent air crash which cost the lives of many of its citizens, Cyprus has found itself on a difficult course whose destination is unclear. Having made every possible effort to secure a solution to the Cyprus problem but having been disappointed once again, Nicosia suddenly found itself faced with a human tragedy on a scale far beyond its capabilities to handle. We may all agree that television coverage of the tragedy was overwhelmingly sensationalist, in Greece as well as Cyprus. However, who would refute the assertion that tiny Cyprus was, and still is, unable to establish an effective and reliable civil aviation authority? In Nicosia, I was told a story which speaks volumes about the state of affairs on the island. The national constitution of 1960 dictates that Cyprus’s harbor master should be a Greek Cypriot and the latter’s deputy a Turkish Cypriot. However, as there was no Turkish Cypriot with seafaring knowledge, the deputy’s post was given to a cafe manager. And this story was related to me by serious individuals in responsible positions. One cannot doubt the fact that the Cypriot Civil Aviation Authority failed to do its job. However, it is also imperative that certain foreign «experts» be identified so that they can explain whether, and how, compulsory inspections on Cypriot aircraft were undertaken…