The Nigerian Government is partnering the international community to effectively train stakeholders in the marine sector on how to be combat ready to tackle their challenges.
This is in its bid to put an end to the increasing maritime crime in the Gulf of Guinea and West Africa.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the maritime security crisis response exercise code named Exercise OTUM KIET, the Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Charles Medani, averred that the training would, among other reasons, step up strategic approach towards a safe, secure and stable maritime domain.
Exercise OTUM KIET, which literally means working together in Efik language, is the second in the series of training to ensure adequate security in the gulf of Guinea.
Organized by the office of the National Security Adviser in collaboration with the European Union‚Äôs Critical Maritime Routes in the Gulf of Guinea (CRIMGO), the training put together for the Nigerian Navy, other Military and Para-military personnel is to collectively get the men better skilled on the prevention and repression of piracy, armed robbery against ships and illegal maritime activities in West and Central Africa.
Beyond capacity building by the EU, which is a stepping stone towards attaining the target of the exercise, Rear Admiral Charles Medani believes as Oliver twist believes, that the biggest issue in maritime security in West Africa is not just skills but platforms.
He called on the European Partners to also look at the possibility of providing enforcement capability alongside the expertise.
A representative from the National Security Adviser, Major-General Babatunde Samuel, as well as the EU CRIMGO Training Coordinator, Eric Glotin, gave assurance that the continuous training of maritime security stakeholders and impartation of technical skills would help to decrease the challenges currently being faced by nations in West Africa.
The training was held at the NNS Victory Jetty in Calabar the Cross River State capital. It is a bi-annual event.