Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah says Ghana will use her seat on the United Nations Security Council to rally a coordinated global response to piracy in the Gulf of Guinea.
“As Ghana is about to take its seat on the UN Security Council as a non-permanent member, we intend to make this as one of our four-point agenda and bring greater international attention to the subject and rally greater international support to deal with it,” he said.
Ghana, whose membership on the UN Security Council begins in January next year has seen her high seas increasingly becoming an attractive destination for maritime pirates targeting commercial cargos and fishing vessels using the Gulf of Guinea.
According to the International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) latest global piracy report, the Gulf of Guinea continues to be a global epicenter for piracy. In the first quarter of 2021 alone, the IMB through its Piracy Reporting Center (PRC), reported 38 piracy incidents on 33 vessels as well as the kidnapping of 40 crew members within the same period.
This the Minister who was speaking on BBC’s Focus on Africa programme on Wednesday, November 8, 2021, said the reason why piracy is rife in the Gulf of Guinea is primarily because there is little coordination among countries and even so, the menace is left to countries along the Gulf of Guinea to deal with.
His comment follows commitment by Ghana and Norway in ensuring collective response to maritime security during their tenures on the Security Council on the margins of the launch of the Stable Seas Report at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on Wednesday.
The launch of the report which was co-sponsored by Ghana, Norway, Nigeria and the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) revealed piracy in the Gulf of Guinea is costing African countries particularly those along the Gulf close to $2 billion a year among hosts of economic losses.
Mr. Oppong Nkrumah however underscored the importance of a global coordinated effort in bringing the piracy menace in the Gulf to an end noting that Ghana's membership will be used to rally broad-based support against piracy in the Gulf.