Wednesday, 6th December 2023

Nigeria needs more non-kinetic strategies to curb piracy,says NIIA DG

By  Ngozi Egenuka 
13 September 2023   |   4:05 am
Director General, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Prof. Eghosa Osaghae, has said Nigeria needs more non-kinetic strategies to deal with piracy. 

Director General, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Prof. Eghosa Osaghae, has said Nigeria needs more non-kinetic strategies to deal with piracy.

Stating that over 80 per cent of global products are transported via sea, he stressed the need to curb challenges encountered via sea to aid economic growth.

He made the recommendation at the Maritime Symposium Anti-Piracy in Lagos organised by NIIA in partnership with UK Royal Navy, themed Enhancing Maritime Security: Collaborative Strategies for Countering Piracy.

He said that according to research from the World Maritime Organisation, piracy in the Gulf of Guinea between 2021 and 2023 has declined compared with the period between 2016 and 2017, when the gulf was the piracy headquarters of the world.

This, he said, could be attributed to some efforts from African countries like Nigeria and Togo, who domesticated laws against piracy.The DG stated that piracy cannot be reduced without identifying what produces pirates and ensuring there is no conducive environment for them to flourish.

HMS Trent’s Commanding Officer, Tim Langford, said at least £7 billion of UK trade passes through Gulf of Guinea annually, adding that similar figures can be claimed by numerous nations operating in the region, reaffirming the fact that maritime insecurity at the regional level, can be felt on a global scale.

Langford said the HMS TRENT is permanently deployed to West Africa and the Mediterranean in a bid to combat maritime insecurity and illegal activities, within the economic zones of coastal nations, and on the High Seas where all military nations maintain a responsibility to challenge the threat posed to their stability by piracy.

He said: “The UK is eager to cooperate with our maritime allies, especially Nigeria, and with regional and non-regional partners going forward, as we look forward to identifying opportunities to work ever more closely to tackle this and other shared security challenges at sea,” he said.

Representing Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla; Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Rear Admiral Mohammed Abdullahi, Nigerian Navy is an important player in the Gulf of Guinea and has huge invested in providing a safe maritime environment.

He explained that the Nigerian Navy came up with a strategy called Multi-Layered Total Spectrum Maritime Strategy, which hinges on three focal areas; maritime surveillance, response capability and law enforcement.

Recount that on Sunday, the Royal Navy Warship, HMS Trent arrived Lagos on its second visit to Nigeria as part of its West Africa’s regional mission to aid British allies and partners in driving down illegal activities, including piracy and illicit trafficking. The ship is on a three month deployment to West Africa.

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