The Maritime Organisation of West and Central Africa (MOWCA) has called for sustained support from the United States government to consolidate the gains of improved security in the Gulf of Guinea
Secretary General of MOWCA, Dr. Paul Adalikwu, who made the call in Abidjan at a meeting with the US Ambassador to Cote D’Voire, Alexander Bell, commended past efforts of the American government in promoting maritime security in the West and Central African region.
Specifically referring to ‘Exercise Obangame Express’, the largest multinational maritime exercise in Western Africa led by the US Navy, Adalikwu said the gains of such military presence are invaluable
In his words, “Achieving and sustaining maritime security comes with multiple benefits like improved trade through a thriving blue economy devoid of piracy and kidnapping of crew members.
“Other benefits of Exercise Obangame Express and similar military interventions include halting hijacking of ships; preventing shipments of dangerous items like prohibited arms and drugs which can promote political instability; curbing illegal fishing activities and encouraging more investments in areas like ship building, repairs and maritime tourism.
“With 6000 kilometers of coastline stretching from Senegal to Angola, serving as a major area of vessel traffic, the Gulf of Guinea is critical to international trade and I must commend the United States for your support over the years. We need more of it” Adalikwu said
The US Ambassador thanked Adalikwu for the visit and reiterated his country’s commitment to improved relationship with MOWCA and its member states.
He also commented his efforts at building stakeholders confidence in MOWCA since he assumed office a year ago.