Enhanced Maritime Surveillance in Offshore Benin

30 May 2021

[Cotonou, 21 May 2021] The Chief of Army Staff will inaugurate the operations room of the National Authority for Coordinating State Action at Sea (ANCAEM) and will preside over the closing ceremony for the YARIS  (Yaoundé Architecture Regional Information System) advanced training programme, in presence of the EU Ambassador, Sylvia Hartleif.

Benin has introduced a coordinated organisation to oversee State action at sea, under the oversight of the ANCAEM. Lead by the Maritime Prefect, Captain Maxime Ahoyo, the ANCAEM now benefits from an operations room, enabling it to host a pool of operators from different administrations (Navies, merchant navy, Customs, Police, fisheries, Environment, Justice, etc.) to coordinate operations at sea.

From 10 to 21 May, 24 operators from the Maritime Operations Centre (MOC), the ANCAEM, the semaphore of Grand Popo and the Multinational Maritime Coordination Centre (MMCC)  Zone E received the YARIS advanced training, delivered by a mixed team of three trainers from GoGIN and from the ICC – Interregional Coordination Centre. Thanks to this pool of maritime operators, the YARIS platform will ultimately be able to be shared with the other administrations under the coordination of the Maritime Prefect.

The aim of this in-person training is to allow centre staff to use YARIS in an operational context. In the case of the three centres in Benin, the focus was on both presenting the host of system functionalities whilst also supporting centres to embed this tool within their own operating procedures. Participants were given fictional scenarios on different themes (fight against maritime pollution, illegal fisheries…) to practice sharing situations, appropriating YARIS, and measuring its performance in daily missions.

Captain Maxime Ahoyo, Maritime Prefect commented the following:

“Information sharing is the key to success for good maritime governance. This training has filled a large gap that had been observed in existing national and sub-regional provision. The YARIS platform is a very useful and user-friendly tool, which will reinforce inter-agency collaboration for greater effectiveness in the struggle against all forms of threats to the maritime domain.”

In the coming months this personalised accompaniment will continue to be rolled out (Guinea, Senegal, Sao Tomé & Principe, Togo, etc.) with the support of mixed training teams (GoGIN and YA centres).

With time, teams in trained centres will be equipped to use the YARIS platform to ensure, on a daily basis, an improved level of maritime surveillance, operational or institutional information sharing, and finally, an enhanced coordination of operations where necessary.


TV News (Canal 3 Benin) reporting the closing ceremony.

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