Angola: Executive Secretary Highlights Importance of Maritime Security in the Gulf of Guinea

Ramiros — The Executive Secretary of the Guinea Golf Commission, José Mba Abeso, reiterated Monday, in Luanda, the need to increase maritime surveillance on the west coast of Africa to avoid piracy and armed robberies.

José Mba Abeso, who was speaking on the sidelines of a workshop "On the security of the vital interests of the sea in shared continental waters", taking place at the National School of Administration and Public Policies (ENAPP), also pointed to illegal fishing and drug trafficking as issues of concern to members in the region.

The Executive Secretary referred to these aspects as he considers it essential that the States in the region can control what happens at sea, in an area where various resources, such as oil and fish, are abundant, remembering that 90% of the import of goods is made through the maritime channel.

He acknowledged, however, that it is not easy due to the diversity of countries that make up its vast area, such as Senegal, Cabo Verde, DRC, Guinea-Bissau, Nigeria and Angola, but there is still a need to intensify security mechanisms.

He said that there is a strong evolution regarding security, but that it is necessary to use more effective and stronger methods.

In this sense, he highlighted the importance of joint sea control between Angola and the DRC, as well as the need for special attention to São Tomé and Príncipe and Equatorial Guinea, the latter as they are made up of many islands.

According to the president of the Economic Community of Central African States (CEEAC), Gilberto Veríssimo, piracy, armed robberies, navigation outside the norms and illegal fishing, which occur in the sea of the Gulf of Guinea and in shared continental waters in the Central African region continue to pose serious threats to international coastal navigation, security, protection and, consequently, the economic development of States in the region.

He recalled that the ECCAS, which also includes many countries in the Gulf of Guinea, took a new direction in the maritime domain and, to this end, the Member States committed themselves to developing and implementing a community maritime policy based on three (3) pillars, namely "Greater maritime coordination", "The protection of the vital interests of the maritime community" and the "Joint and integrated exploitation of the sea through the development of a blue economy".

CEEAC is made up of, in addition to Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Central African Republic, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and São Tomé and Príncipe. AKA/SC/TED/DOJ

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