6th – 7th February 2020
In addressing the unending reports on piracy, armed robbery and other maritime crimes in the Gulf of Guinea, the Yaoundé Code of Conduct and its structures were established to promote coordination among maritime security actors to facilitate maritime domain awareness in the Gulf of Guinea. However, over the years, these structures have consistently been faced with challenges at various the levels i.e. political, regional, zonal and national.
As part of the Danish Peace and Stabilization Fund’s Gulf of Guinea Maritime Security Programme (MSP), the Royal Danish Defense College (RDDC) is implementing a project on Dialogue and Research as Platform for Maritime Security – Understanding the Threat Response Architecture in the Gulf of Guinea. This seeks to bring together relevant individuals and actors to assess challenges in the maritime domain of the Gulf of Guinea and generate ideas on how the identified challenges can be addressed.
In this vein, the KAIPTC in partnership with RCCD organized a Conference on Challenges and Prospects for International Cooperation on Maritime Domain Awareness in West Africa from the 6th to 7th February 2020 at the KAIPTC, Accra-Ghana. This involved 22 experts from the MMCC’s in zone E and F, CRESMAO, ECOWAS and ECCAS. The objective of this conference was to:
Present were Major General Francis Ofori (Commandant, KAIPTC), Rear Admiral Seth Amoama (Chief of Naval Staff of Ghana), Rear Admiral Henrik Ryberg (Commandant, RDDC), Her Excellency Tove Degnbol (Denmark’s ambassador to Ghana) and Prof.Kwesi Aning (Director, Faculty of Academic Affairs & Research, KAIPTC). As well as representatives from the Defence Command Denmark, Danish Institute of International Studies, Danish Shipping Association, Centre for Maritime Law and Security Africa, European External Action Service, and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. In delivering her keynote address, H.E Tove Degnbol, Ambassador, Royal Danish Embassy mentioned that
Maritime Security is inherently a global issue. It requires close cooperation among all the coastal countries in the region, collaboration across agencies in each of the countries (notable defence and maritime agencies), collaboration between enforcement agencies and research institutions, and collaboration with international actors such as IMO and UNODC -to mention only some of the key actors.Keynote Speech- H.E Tove Degnbol, Ambassar, Royal Danish Embassy
Consisting of panel discussions and interactive sessions, the participants deliberated on the current situation of crime at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, threat response architecture in zone E and F, and the role of international organizations in supporting regional maritime cooperation and addressing challenges of regional cooperation i.e. bilateral and cooperation through MMCCs.
The two-day conference ended with practical recommendations. A communiqué was later shared with all participants.