High Speed Vessel Swift Departs Lagos, Nigeria


High Speed Vessel Swift (HSV 2) departed Lagos, Nigeria, Aug. 13, following a two-week visit in support of Africa Partnership Station (APS) West.

While in port, Rear Adm. Kenneth “K.J.” Norton, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa deputy chief of staff for strategy, resources and plans, hosted the Maritime Stakeholders Conference on board Swift.

The conference was attended by military and civilian government officials, and members of private associations including representatives from local fisheries management, shipbuilders, offshore energy extraction companies and government regulators from both the U.S. and Africa.

“This kind of broad spectrum organization across different industries and groups is particularly useful when we talk about effective, organized marine governance because the environment is used for different purposes by various groups that frequently do not coordinate their actions with other users,” said Lt. Cmdr. Charles Eaton, officer in charge of Swift.

Swift’s other contributions to APS and Nigeria included embarked U.S. Navy instructors who taught multiple courses to Nigerian military personnel in tactical combat casualty care, physical port security, biomedical training, law enforcement techniques, maritime intelligence and operations fusion center fundamentals.

Swift Sailors also donated schoolbooks, sports equipment, computers, water purifiers and wheelchairs to local orphanages as part of Project Handclasp.

Project Handclasp is a U.S. Navy program that transports and distributes educational, humanitarian, and goodwill material from U.S. charities on a space-available basis aboard U.S. Navy ships.

“It was a privilege to be a part of this community relations project,” said Eaton. “Organizing and hosting this event, and I hope that we can continue to be involved in these types of efforts to improve maritime governance throughout the Gulf of Guinea area as we continue our APS mission.”

APS is an international security cooperation initiative, facilitated by Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, aimed at strengthening global maritime partnerships through training and collaborative activities in order to improve maritime safety and security in Africa.

Source: navy, August 19, 2011;