NIgeria last year spent about N2.6 billion to provide security for the waterways of Cotonou, the Benin Republic capital, a development that has so far checkmated the activities of pirates around the area.
Disclosing this to Vanguard recently in Lagos, Special Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan on Maritime affairs, Mr. Leke Oyewole, said that the Nigerian government had to ensure that the waterways of Benin Republic are secured because of the understanding between both countries.
Oyewole noted that since the issue was decisively dealt with in that region, there has been some relative peace in that axis. The amount, according to Oyewole, was spent within the first six months of the operation of the project
He stated that the move by Nigeria to assist a neighbouring country has gotten her commendations from the Economic Community of the
West African States (ECOWAS) and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).
He further disclosed that at a point the President of Benin Republic Mr. Yayi Boni came to President Jonathan to solicit for help on the menace of pirates of Cotonou waters.
“Immediately after the complained, the Nigerian President swung into and sent men and materials to the country to quell the menace of pirates in that country.continued