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Meet the Team: Meet the Team


Associate Director

Commodore James Osei Kontoh is an executive officer of the Ghana Navy with extensive knowledge in Maritime Security, Military Diplomacy, Leadership and Training. As the immediate past Ghana’s Defense Advisor to the Federal Republic of Nigeria with oversight responsibility in other countries including Togo, Benin, Niger and Cameroon he brings to the Institute wealth of experience and international network.


He holds a Master’s Degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.   He also holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Information Technology from KNUST and New Jersey Institute of Science and Technology {NJIT}, USA. Additionally, he holds a Diploma in Public Administration (DPA) and Certificates in Crisis and Conflict Management(CCMC), and Ghana Security Sector Governance and Management (GSSG&MC), all from the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA).


Commodore Kontoh’s background in the military has seen him undertaking a number of courses including Basic Naval Officers Training Course at the Pakistan Naval Academy, where he graduated as the best student in academics; Sub-Lieutenant Technical Course at Britannia Royal Naval Academy (UK);  Junior and Senior Staff Courses at the Ghana Armed Forces Command & Staff College. He also attended Senior Officers Amphibious Planning Course at Expeditionary Warfare Training Group in Coronado, California – USA;  High National Defence Studies in Paris, France; Managing Defence in the Wider Security Context Course at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) and African Cooperation Decision Makers Course at Nasser Higher Military Academy, Cairo, Egypt.


As an astute naval officer with about 40 years of experience, he held various appointments both ashore and afloat. He was also a member of the Directing Staff (DS) at both the Ghana Armed Forces Command and Staff College (GAFCSC) and Armed Forces Command and Staff College (AFCSC), Jaji, Nigeria. Other prominent appointments he held include Director Naval Training, Naval Headquarters; Chief Instructor (Navy), Assistant and Deputy Commandant, GAFCSC; Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Navy Training Command (NAVTRAC) , Western Naval Command (WNC) and Eastern Naval Command (ENC).


Commodore James Osei Kontoh  has participated in a number of international military operations including the ECOWAS Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) in Liberia and the United Nation Missions in Rwanda, Ethiopia and Eritrea.


 He enjoys listening to Gospel Music and playing Golf.



Programme Manager

Lawrence is responsible for the design and delivery of projects ranging from private and public advisory projects  in  ocean sustainability to large-scale implementation programmes, notably working on the delivery of policy recommendations on vital aspects of sustainability of the Yaoundé  Architecture to the Heads of States of the Yaounde Code of Conduct (YCoC) member states, under the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) “Sustainability of the YCoC Architecture Project’’.

Lawrence also supports the project administration of the Canada West Africa Growing Women and Youth Technical Capacity for a Safe, Secure and Sustainable Blue Economy (WYTEC Blue) Programme - (Scale up delivery of business development, entrepreneurship and skills, Phase 1 implemented in sub-Saharan Africa, Cape Verde and Nova Scotia, Canada). The programme forms part of Canada’s contribution to the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030). 


Additionally, Lawrence has worked for the Nigerian Martime Administration and  Safety  Agency (NIMASA) on  the Green Maritime Africa Coalition (GMAC) Regional office for Africa where he focused on the delivery of Intelligence and Knowledge Management for the accelerating of sub-Saharan Africa’s shipping industry transformation towards carbon peaking and carbon neutrality.  In addition, Lawrence was responsible for delivering cross-exchange platforms for NIMASA, the Nigerian Navy, and the Inter-regional Coordination Centre (ICC) on maritime security and sustainability programmes under the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Collaboration Forum (GoG-MCF/SHADE),  assisting regional navies and shipping industry with maritime security incident reporting and analysis for governments. 
Prior to these experiences, Lawrence has worked under the ECOP Programme through a Memorandum of Understanding with GoGMI, where he supported the design and delivery of the GoGMI-ECOP Training Programme on Ocean Sustainability and Exposure of Young Leaders to Blue Economy Careers and Business Entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa.

Lawrence holds a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Ports and Shipping from the Regional Maritime University.



Research Manager

Miss Juliet Afrah Obeng has a staunch academic background within the maritime space. She obtained her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Fisheries Science at the University of Cape Coast, under the World Bank scholarship for the Africa Centre of Excellence in Coastal Resilience (ACECoR). Miss. Juliet Afrah Obeng is an ocean resource professional with about (9) years of progressive experience in fisheries management, ocean and fisheries governance, Aquaculture, Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) and Blue Economy. She is currently working at the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Institute (GoGMI) as a Research Manager. Prior to this appointment, she doubled as a research consultant/ assistant at the Africa Blue Economy Institute (ABEI), the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) - the Department of Fisheries & Aquatic Sciences, University of Cape Coast (DFAS-UCC), Ghana and the USAID Women Shellfishers and Food Security Project Phase I & II, Centre for coastal management, UCC. Her varied career has taken her to many institutions where she has been instrumental in research projects, advocacy campaigns, and capacity building pertaining to environmental conservation, safety, and maritime security.  Being a visionary and supporter of conscientious stewardship, she remains committed to staying abreast of the latest developments in her field, ensuring her contributions align with the highest standards of excellence.


Training Coordinator

Hassanatu Abdulai is a flexible and resourceful person who is passionate in everything she does and a result-oriented individual. She is always proactive about seeking new opportunities to develop and grow. Hassanatu holds a degree in Bachelor of commerce (Marketing) and a master’s degree in MA Ports and Shipping Administration from the University of Cape Coast and the Regional Maritime University respectively. During her four years stay at the University of Cape Coast, she had the privilege to do her industrial attachments with the Ghana Cocoa board.


In 2019, she also had the opportunity to do her National Service with the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority where she developed interest in the maritime domain which later influenced her decision to have her master’s program in Ports and Shipping Administration. Hassanatu is currently serving as the training coordinator at the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Institute.

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Graphic Design and Marketing Coordinator

Enoch Dzane Nikoi is a very passionate creative designer, digital marketer, and graphic designer with an eye for style, color, and texture. He is a young graduate from the University of Ghana Business School, majoring in Marketing. He spent some time assisting some business startups like RecycleIT Ghana, Hair Communique, and also a co-founder of The Creative Potter, a graphic design company. He has worked with Heritage Discovery Learning Center and Cares for the Future of the Girl Child to bring smiles to the face of orphans at the Osu Children’s home in Accra, Ghana, and girls in the Amanten community, Bono East region, Ghana respectively. He is a sociable person and seeks to start an NGO shortly to help the community raise a better generation to come. He pioneered with his team, the social media presence of the Ghana Navy on Instagram during the time he spent serving as a National Service Personnel.

Enoch currently serves as the Graphic Design and Marketing Coordinator at the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Institute.



Asst. Finance and Administration Officer

Rhodalyn, fondly referred to as Ewurama by her supervisors and peers, exemplifies dedication and a profound passion for accounting and finance. She obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Accounting from the University of Professional Studies, Accra, Ghana, where she meticulously honed her skills and knowledge in Accounting and Administration.

Presently, as a Level 2 student at the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana (ICAG), Rhodalyn remains steadfast in her pursuit of excellence in both her studies and career advancement within the field of accounting. Concurrently, she fulfills the role of Assistant Finance and Administrative Officer at the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Institute.


Backed by a solid academic background and an unwavering commitment to success, Rhodalyn harbors aspirations of becoming a trusted professional in the accounting domain, poised to make significant contributions to Ghana's financial landscape and beyond.

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Ghana Air Force

AVM Frank Hanson officially assumed the role of the Executive Director from 9th of January 2023 at the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Institute. Prior to his appointment, he was the Chief of Air Staff of the Ghana Air Force from January 2019 to January 2023.


He holds an MSc in Strategic Studies with Grand Strategy Concentration and as an adent Peacekeeper, he served with the United Nations and African Union as a strategic Military and Aviation planner. He is an expert in national and international security.


An astute and highly experienced military instructor pilot. AVM Hanson has works with leading aircraft manufacturers to develop the "static aircraft carrier concept"; for Tactical Air support for Maritime Operations (TASMO) as well as offshore Special Forces Operations. His tenure at the helm of affairs at the Ghana Air Force saw a holistic interoperability between the Ghana Navy and the Ghana Air Force. Additionally, he has participated in several AU and UN missions across the continent and was part of the consultative team that worked on Ghana's National Integrated Maritime Strategy.​


He is an alumni of the Harvard University, the US Air University, the US Air War College, Command and Staff College, Ghana, Command Staff College, Nigerai and brings over 30 years of experience in deep understanding of diplomacy, global geopolitical matters, Aviation, National Security and Strategic Leadership to the Institute.



Nigerian Navy

Rear Admiral Solomon Agada was commissioned into the Nigerian Navy as Sub-Lieutenant in 1991. He has attended several courses in the course of his career which include the Officer Long Course where he specialized in Navigation and Direction, the Junior and Senior Staff Courses as well as Strategic Defence Studies course among others.


Rear Admiral Solomon also obtained Certificates of Training from the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Sanremo-Italy in international Humanitarian Law, Rules of Engagement, Naval Operations and Law as well as Advanced Course in International Humanitarian Law. Furthermore, he holds Certificate of Training in United Nations Peace Support Operations (COTIPSO) from the United Nations Institute for Training and Research, USA. His academic qualifications include, Bachelor of Science (Chemistry) from the Nigerian Defence Academy Kaduna Nigeria, Master in International Affairs and Diplomacy (MAID) from Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Nigeria and Masters of Philosophy in Strategy and Development Studies from Bangladesh University of Professionals, Dhaka, Bangladesh.


In the course of his career, Rear Admiral Solomon have held several appointments afloat and ashore some of which are, Commanding Officer Nigerian Navy Ship AYAM, Directing Staff at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji-Nigeria, Exchange Directing Staff at the South Africa National War College, Pretoria-South Africa and Directing Staff at the prestigious National Defence College, Abuja-Nigeria. Additionally, he was also the Chief Staff Officer Central Naval Command, Nigerian Navy and the pioneer Co-Chair of the Gulf of Guinea Maritime Collaboration Forum Shared Awareness and De-Confliction (GOG-SHADE) from April 2021 until 13 May 2022. He is currently the Chief of Training and Operations, Naval Headquarters, Nigerian Navy.
Rear Admiral Agada is happily married to Barrister Mary Agada and the union is blessed with 3 children. He enjoys reading, listening to gospel music, walking and playing squash at his leisure.


Hon. Kathleen Quartey Ayensu, Esq.

Special Advisor to the President of Ghana

Hon. Kathleen Quartey Ayensu is a multi-jurisdictional lawyer of the Bars of England and Wales, Ghana, and Washington DC. Since 2017, she has been a Member of the African Union Commission on International Law. The Commissioner is also the Special Rapporteur
on Piracy and Maritime Security, similar to the Digest of African States’ Practice in International Law, and for the COVID-19 pandemic.Past professional positions include Attorney General of the British Virgin Islands, Chief State Attorney of Ghana, and Attorney in leading Washington DC law firms. In 2021 she delivered the lectures on Piracy and Maritime Security in the Gulf of Guinea to postgraduates at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Centre, Ghana.

Hon. Kathleen was a Special Advisor to the President of Ghana and the Council of State as a Member/Counsel regarding the aluminum and energy industry in Ghana. She served as the first Member/Counsel to the Public Procurement Board of Ghana. In the BVI, she was commended by Cabinet for the Territory’s rating at the CFATF evaluation and subsequently for bringing to fruition a commercial division of the regional court. In the USA, she acted as a legal advisor for the construction of the new Ghana Chancery building in Washington, DC, and worked on international specialized litigation. Hon. Ayensu has been a guest speaker and delegate at numerous international platforms.


Academic qualifications: Master of Comparative Law, The George Washington University (1987); Utter Barrister, Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn (1976); Master of Laws, London University (1974); Bachelor of Laws (Honours), University of Ghana (1973); Certificate in Management of the Exclusive Economic Zone, International Ocean Institute, Malta (1980). Social: Member, Ghana Bar Association and District of Columbia Bar; past Member/Counsel, Board of Governors, Aburi Girls’ Senior High School; past Member/Counsel of the Bamboo and Rattan Network of Ghana.

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Director de Eventos y Comunicaciones

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Director de Eventos y Comunicaciones

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Director de Eventos y Comunicaciones



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