Ghana: Recognise Women’s Contribution to the Maritime Sector – Maj. Gen. Gyane

The Commandant of the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC), Major General Richard Addo Gyane, says women’s contributions to the maritime sector brings diversity, new perspectives and innovative solutions to the industry’s challenges.

Therefore, he said it was important that women’s participation in the maritime sector as well as their contributions to a sustainable blue economy be recognised.

The Commandant made the remarks at the opening of a two-day symposium on harnessing women’s contribution to the blue economy in the Gulf of Guinea (GoG) in Cotonou, Benin.

The Symposium, organised by the KAIPTC, formed part of policy engagements towards contributing to discourses aimed at enhancing women’s roles, participation and representation in decision making in the maritime economy.

The KAIPTC, with the financial support from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs is implementing a five-year project on ‘Integrated Responses to Threats to Maritime Safety and Security in the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Domain in West and Central Africa (2022-2026).’

The five-year project leverages the experiences of a previous three-year project on “Enhancing Regional Research, Capacity Building and Convening of Stakeholders towards a Safer Maritime Domain in the Gulf of Guinea (2019-2021).”

The project seeks to provide a platform for maritime stakeholders in the GoG, including operational level actors in maritime security institutions, the private sector and civil society actors, to better understand the maritime security landscape, deepen their collaboration, coordination, pool individual and collective resources in efforts at strengthening maritime security in the GoG.

The Commandant stated that recognising and supporting women’s involvement in the maritime workforce was not only essential for promoting gender equality, but also for achieving an inclusive and sustainable maritime economy.

He said the sector offered a range of opportunities for job creation, improved livelihoods and sustainable economic growth and development to populations across the region, including women, who unfortunately were often poorly represented across all the maritime sectors.

Maj. Gen. Gyane said while regional maritime frameworks generally remained gender neutral, emerging maritime security threats including Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, maritime piracy, human trafficking, maritime pollution among others negatively affect women and their livelihoods.