Ghana Navy retooled with six vessels

 The President, Nana Addo Dank­wa Akufo-Addo, on Saturday com­missioned six new vessels into the Ghana Navy Fleet at the Western Naval Command (WNC), Sekondi in the Western Region.

The event was part of the government’s commitment to resource Ghana Navy to effective­ly secure the country’s maritime domain.

The vessels were two Bound­ary Class ships, donated by the United States (US) government and christened the Ghana Navy Ship (GNS) Half Assini and GNS Aflao, two Defender Class boats, an Oil Spill Response Vessel, christened Esther Afua Ocloo, for the Ghana Maritime Author­ity, and a locally-manufactured landing craft.

Speaking at a ceremony, Presi­dent Akufo-Addo said the move was a manifestation of the gov­ernment’s commitment to retool and re-equip the Ghana Armed Forces to enable them to perform their duties of protecting the terri­torial integrity of the country.

Additionally, he indicated that, the new vessels symbolised the government’s resolve to safeguard Ghana’s maritime sovereignty.

The President expressed the government’s commitment to resourcing the Navy and other relevant agencies in the maritime sector to help guarantee the sus­tainable exploitation and benefits the ocean offered.

“This is a significant achieve­ment considering that the country experienced several attacks on ships including the kidnapping of nine crew members from a Gha­naian vessel in 2021,” he said.

President Akufo-Addo urged the Naval officers to continue to safeguard the maritime boundaries from any external aggressions, stressing “As we protect these maritime territories there is the need to maintain significant Naval presence so as to prevent crimi­nals from exploiting any contested area.”

The US Ambassador to Ghana, Ms Virginia Palmer, explained that the donation of the boats was the latest in the United States’ long­standing support for the Ghana Navy, including training, technical assistance, and naval infrastructure projects.

She said that the vessels would help to deny pirates, traffickers, and other criminals the use of the sea for their illegal activities, mak­ing Ghana and the region not just safer, but more prosperous.

Ms Palmer maintained that maritime security was critical to the country’s sovereignty and prosperity, noting that piracy and illegal fishing in the Gulf of Guinea were a persistent men­ace, threatening the livelihoods and traditions of Ghana’s fishing industry.

She said “These vessels are the newest component of U.S. support to protect and regenerate these fragile fisheries.

The Minister of Defence, Mr Dominic Nitiwul, expressed the importance of a well-equipped Armed Forces stating “that is why the President Akufo-Addo-led government has made the retool­ing of the Ghana Armed Forces, including the Navy a priority.”

The Minister of Transport, Mr Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, on his part said the Oil Spill Response Vessel marked a significant milestone in the country’s maritime sector as it provided a major boost to efforts towards creating a vibrant, safe, and secured maritime ecosystem for economic growth.

Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Ad­miral Issah Yakubu, thanked the President and other partners for the immense efforts in retooling the Ghana Navy to carry out their mandates diligently and effectively.


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