The Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) with support from the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has begun security training for port facility personnel.
The training, for about 30 participants from the Ghana Ports and Harbour Authority, Ship Owners and Agents Association and the Ghana Maritime University forms part of the implementation requirement of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) code.
It is also to build the requisite capacity of personnel in order to ensure full and effective implementation of the Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS) Convention, an important maritime security instrument which requires every ship and port facility to institute measures to avert possible security threat that could jeopardize the safety operations of the ship or port facility.
Director General GMA, Thomas Alonsi, speaking at the opening of the five-day workshop, acknowledged the immense support the IMO has been giving to the GMA in the area of capacity building programmes under the Maritime Security Project for the West and Central Africa Member States.
“We are indeed grateful … in particular the technical assistance offered by the IMO in the development of the National Maritime Security Strategy for Ghana,” Mr. Alonsi said.
He observed that the implementation of the ISOS Code is a key indicator of an effective port security measure, adding that the training will improve the knowledge and skills of participants vis-à-vis the requirement for personnel with designated security duties to undertake responsibilities in accordance with the relevant provisions of SOLAS and ISPS Code and related guidance.
Technical Officer, Maritime Safety Sub-division of the Maritime Security Facilitation, IMO, Mourad Ghorbel, said the workshop has been designed with IMO Model on Port Facility Security Officer (PFSO) as the basis.
“We hope that this workshop will be a good opportunity for all participants to gain the knowledge of the subject and to acquire the technical skills to implement and enforce ISPS code,” he said.