2 November 2018

Ghana: Govt On Track to Address Maritime Security Issues - Deputy Minister

Ghana has begun a process to de-limit the maritime boundary between the country and Togo, a Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Mohammad Habibu Tijani, has said.

Additionally, government is strengthening the legal regime on piracy and maritime crime by moving the Ghana Maritime Offences Bill forward to enhance the maritime criminal justice system to be able to effectively prosecute prospective offenders within Ghana's maritime jurisdiction.

The Deputy Minister was outlining challenges and commitments in addressing Ghana's maritime security threats at the just-ended 5th "Our Ocean" Conference in the Indonesian city of Bali.

This year's conference, the first to be held in Asia, gathered over 600 commitments which is valued at about US$ 18 billion and created 12.4 square kilometres of marine protected area.

Mr Tijani led a delegation to represent Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Minister of Foreign Affairs, at the conference. The Deputy Minister was joined by Ghana's High Commissioner to Malaysia, Madam Akua Ahenkra and other officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration.

At the conference, Mr Tijani presented a statement on "Ghana's Initiatives in addressing maritime security issues" on a panel.

Meanwhile, on the sidelines, Indonesia-Africa Maritime Dialogue was also held. It was attended by senior officials from Indonesian institutions and officials from African countries including Ghana. Other representatives from Fish-I African, Global Fishing Watch, Interpol, and UNODC were also present.

Mr Tijani cited piracy and armed robbery, illegal oil bunkering or theft of crude oil, threat to offshore oil and gas production, illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, arms, drugs and human trafficking as the major threats to maritime security that Ghana faces.

He assured everything possible was being done to address the concerns.

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