The Chief of Naval Command says the Ghana Navy and National Security have saved the nation over one billion Ghana cedis through crime prevention and combating in Ghanaian territorial waters.
Real Admiral Peter Kofi Faidoo says “according to the Chief Executive Officer of National Petroleum Commission, the operations of the Ghana Navy and National Security have helped to save the country almost one billion Ghana Cedis that would have gone into the private pockets of individuals engaged in illegal activities at sea.”
He made this known on Friday during the 2018 administrative inspection parade of the Eastern Naval Command at the Naval Base, Tema Newtown.
Real Admiral Faidoo said, the Command had been vigorously engaged in fighting illegal bunkering and related criminal activities at sea.
“Of particular interest was the arrest of two vessels earlier this year engaged in illegal transfer of petrol at sea,” he stressed.
He commended the Tema Naval Command for taking proactive measures in effecting the arrest of persons engaged in unauthorized activities on territorial waters.
“I further commend you for your efforts, together with other sister agencies, in ensuring continuous security in the Tema Metropolis and the Nation’s maritime environment,” he said.
He said the responsibilities of the Ghana Navy were continuously increasing, and it called for improvement in their equipment status, adding that “that was especially so because the maritime threat we face today such as piracy, armed robbery at sea, drug trafficking, illegal bunkering and illicit trade in small arms and light weapons, are far different from those in the past.”
He added that, “Today, with the aid of technology, criminals at sea employ all manner of tactics and sometimes sophisticated weapons to succeed in their criminal activities. In order to succeed, the Ghana Navy would have to adopt new strategies to confront maritime crime head on.”
He said government realized the importance of the maritime domain and was investing significantly to retool the Navy to carry out its mandate to ensure security at sea and also create a conducive environment for investment.
“In line with this, the Navy is working closely with the government to acquire off-shore patrol vessels for the navy which would help enforce maritime laws by maintaining its constant presence at sea and reduce our reaction time to emergencies,” Real Admiral Faidoo said.
He said generally the Navy’s performance this year had been commendable in the face of logistical constraints, citing good planning and judicious use of resources by the Command as what had enabled the navy to chalk successes in most of its operations.
He acknowledged the ingenuity and resourcefulness of the Flag Officer Commanding the Eastern Command, Commodore Kontoh, Officers and Civilian Employees of the Command “whose resourcefulness with other key holders in the industry, these remarkable achievements have been made.”
The administrative inspection is an opportunity for the Naval Headquarters to assess, first-hand, the state of affairs in the Command.
It further allows the review of performance and stock taking of events in order to define the cost of the Navy, and also to assess the operational readiness and equipment state of the Command.
On parade were three contingents made up of a male division, female division and a senior division. There was also a 48 men guard, Navy Ensign and the Ghana Navy Regimental Band. The Parade Commander was Lt. Commander Isaac Kudjo.
Other activities included the naming of a 368 housing units after Admiral Geoffrey Mawuli Biekro (Rtd) for initiating the project.