Ghana Armed Forces train for coastal protection
The Ghana Armed Forces (GAF), in association with the African Partnership Station (APS), are undertaking a tri-service combat training aimed at equipping the country’s forces to be ready against any threat on sea and air, and inland.
The joint training of the Army, Navy and the Air Force, under the APS, is to make the country’s coasts unattractive to piracy, illegal fishing, drug, human and arms trafficking, as well as other illegalities.
It saw the integration of the United States Marines, United Kingdom Royal Marine, the Spanish and the Dutch marines under the Command of Col Fred Swart.
The training, which started about 10 a.m at the home port of the Western Naval Command, created a real life situation where the warship carrying troops had to move in and save the situation
Speaking to the media after the exercise, Col Swart said the training would position the Ghanaian armed forces well to combat any threat that might confront them.
He said the training started with a demonstration by the combined team of United States, United Kingdom, Spanish and Dutch marines to share their experiences with their Ghanaian counterparts.
Maritime threats, he said, were global and required collaboration, and that under the APS, training objectives were designed to meet the demands of the countries within the partnership.
The current training, he said, demonstrated how troops could be deployed from the land to a ship for combat purposes.
Col Swart said the training was expected to build the capacity of the Ghana Armed Forces, as there were also classroom sessions on how to deal with the issue of illegal fishing among others.
Commodore Godson Zowonoo, who is in charge of the Western Naval Command, said the training was very important, as it provided them the opportunity to learn and share experiences with other countries under the APS.
He said there was no doubt that serious crimes were being committed daily beyond the horizons of the Gulf of Guinea, saying, ‘in Ghana, we have armed robbery at sea, illegal bunkering, transshipment and, therefore, the training and the experiences under the APS were timely.
He said the expectations of the tri-service in the training were to ensure that officers and the men sharpened their skills and be battle-ready at all times.
The government, he said, had provided the Armed Forces with some equipment, and emphasised that what was needed currently was more training to position them better.
By Moses Dotsey Aklorbortu & Andrews Tetteh/Daily Graphic/Ghana
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