The first-ever combined maritime enforcement operation led by the Ghana Navy has successfully detected, tracked and investigated 14 suspected fishing vessels resulting in the arrest of four of the vessels for engaging in Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing practices.
The successful operation was as a result of the synergized efforts of other Ghana Maritime Law Enforcement (MLE) agencies namely; Maritime Police, Fisheries Enforcement Unit (FEU) and Attorney General’s Department. It is worth mentioning that the establishment of trust between the Ghana MLE and the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO’s) on information sharing played a key role in the success of the operation as well as the technical support from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
The operation which was supported by the UNODC had Global Fishing Watch (GFW), Vulcan Skylight and Trygg Mat Tracking (TMT) as partners who provided intelligence data on the suspected fishing vessels operating in Ghanaian waters.
The Ghana Maritime Law Enforcement agencies have benefited from the rich experience of the NGO’s in the detection of fisheries crimes and the use of technology to enhance the detection of illicit activities at sea. It is envisaged that the partnership would be strengthened to include information on other maritime crimes in the region.