The Global Aviation Gender Summit continues in Cape Town on Women’s Day on Thursday.

Role-players from government, the aviation industry and various international organisations have come together at the three day summit to strengthen gender equality in aviation.

The summit is being hosted by the South African Civil Aviation Authority in cooperation with the International Civil Aviation Organisation.


Senior Manager at Air Traffic Navigation Services in SA, Tembisa Maphike says the summit is crucial in addressing gender issues.

She says: “The challenges that I have faced in my career means that we have to do more to make sure that we encourage young girls to come into this industry because we are in 2018 but still the numbers are not looking good.”

She adds: “We must not increase the numbers for the sake of increasing numbers but we must encourage women and ladies to come into the industry as there is so much value that women can add to the industry.”

Delivering the opening address, Deputy Transport Minister, Sindisiwe Chikunga, said only nine percent of South Africa’s pilots are female. Chikunga says government is committed to promoting gender equality in aviation…

“For once we have a woman secretary general, we have a woman chair at SACAA. Because they are women, they see what is happening. For instance, in South Africa, let’s take pilots, the percentages of ratios are that 90 percent will generally be men and only ten percent will be women. It can’t continue like that.”