Ghana’s cooperation in maritime dispute with Ivory Coast lauded by ITLOS

Ghana’s posture in the three-year maritime dispute against La Cote d’Ivoire has been highly commended by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS). On Saturday, September 23, when the Special Chamber delivered its judgment on the case, it said since the Anglophone country was ordered in 2015 not to drill new oil discs, it has abided by that ruling. “Ghana has contributed to cooperation,” the Special Chamber asserted. The maritime border dispute began in 2014 after several efforts to reach an agreement between the two parties fell through. The over six years of bilateral discussions on an agreed maritime boundary did not yield any positive outcome, forcing Ghana to petition the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Ghana was subsequently ordered to halt exploratory activities in the area until finality is brought to the issue. On Saturday, the Special Chamber said Ghana had shown maturity in abiding by the ITLOS orders and done well in keeping La Cote d’Ivoire in the know as regards every decision taken throughout the resolution process at ITLOS. It said though Ghana did not furnish La Cote d’Ivoire until an intervention by the Special Chamber’s President, “such conduct cannot reasonably be considered to constitute a violation of the measures prescribed in the Order of 25 April 2015”. New coordinates for new maritime metes have been agreed upon. The two countries have also agreed to abide by every letter of the decision taken by ITLOS. “Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana seize this opportunity to reiterate the mutual commitment of the two countries to abide by the terms of this decision from the Special Chamber and to fully collaborate for its implementation,” a joint communique issued minutes after the judgement said. [caption id="attachment_62281" align="alignnone" width="565"] Glora Afua Akuffo led Ghana’s delegation while Adama Toungara led Ivory Coast’s[/caption] Cote d’Ivoire’s demands for compensation were turned down as Ghana would know after the new plotting whether it can go ahead with new explorations.

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By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh||Ghana ]]>