The Nigerian Navy has initiated a significant operation to enhance maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.
This deployment of five warships comes as part of two simultaneous exercises: ‘Exercise Crocodile Lift’ and ‘Exercise Ex-Grand African Nemo 2023.’
Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, the Chief of Naval Staff, launched these exercises to address the growing security infringements along this vital water corridor.
The primary objective of these exercises is to curb criminal activities that pose a serious threat to Nigeria’s economic well-being.
Criminal elements have been targeting the country’s economic lifeline through activities like crude oil theft, illegal oil bunkering, piracy, sea robbery, hostage-taking, and illegal unreported and unregulated fishing.
The Gulf of Guinea has become a hotspot for these nefarious acts, jeopardizing Nigeria’s national well-being.
Five formidable Nigerian Navy Ships, including NNS KADA, NNS ABA, NNS UDU, NNS KANO, and the Deep Blue Lagos, will participate in these exercises.
This naval show of strength is a clear indication of the commitment to safeguard the Gulf of Guinea.
The Nigerian Navy is determined to put an end to these illegal activities and secure the nation’s economic interests.
The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, emphasized the long-term commitment to these exercises.
The government acknowledges the critical role they play in curbing maritime criminality and ensuring security in the Gulf of Guinea.
These annual exercises have proven effective in enhancing international collaboration against maritime insecurity.
These exercises also align with the objectives of the Yaoundé Protocol, an international agreement signed by 25 countries from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Economic Community of Central African States.
The protocol aims to foster cooperation among these coastal nations to combat illicit activities in the Gulf of Guinea, an area that has seen a concerning rise in piracy.
By working together, these nations are dedicated to making this vital region safer.