By Olayinka Ajayi
In a bid to address the menace of piracy and armed robbery in Africa’s coast, the Ghanaian Navy has concluded plans to host Naval Chiefs from across Africa along with 250 international senior officials from Navies, Coast Guards and Marine Police at the International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference (IMDEC).
In a statement, Ghana’s Chief of Naval Staff Rear Admiral Seth Amoama maintained that the aim is to address issues critical to the maritime industry in Africa saying: “We aim at addressing critical issues such as interdicting regional maritime security threats, inter-agency cooperation as well as identifying the key solutions and partners required to achieve greater stability on the Gulf of Guinea.
“It’s a strategic gathering of Africa’s Navies, Coast Guards, Port and Coastal Authorities, Marine Police and related Ministries taking place on July 24 and july25 2019 in Accra.
“ According to report released by Ocean Beyond Piracy ,OBP, showed that the economic cost of piracy to West Africa has been on the increase in the last three years, reaching over $818.1 million in 2017, while about $213.7 million was spent to contract maritime security personnel protecting vessels in the region. It revealed that regional spending on law enforcement and naval patrols increased by $13.2 million in the year.
“Based on the OBP report, we aim to explore modern technical innovations that will aid in curbing the illegal unregulated, unreported fishing dominating our maritime domain. We look forward to a rich conversation on information sharing and capacity building. we will also talk about cyber and electronic warfare”.