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Environmentalist wants a review of Nigerian Biosafety law


Abuja  –  The Director, Health of Mother Earth, an NGO, Mr Nnimmo Bassey, on Tuesday called for a review of the Biosafety law to safeguard the nation`s environment and food systems.

Bassey made the call at a 2-Day National Conference on `Good Governance‎ and Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) in Abuja.

“We demand that the law be drastically reviewed to safeguard our environment, health, food systems and future generations.

“We are concerned that rather than supporting small holder farmers, who are known to hold the key for supply of wholesome food, our agencies are embracing risky technologies that would lead to colonisation of the agricultural sector.

“The Nigerian Biosafety Management Act (2015) is a highly defective piece of legislation contrived to open Nigeria up for a literal GMO invasion, “ he said.

Bassey said that the problem in the country was not lack of food but lack of access to food by a significant portion of the population.

He appealed to the government to put in place necessary infrastructure to enhance food production and circulation in the country..

Bassey said the average Nigerian tend to think that fruits bigger than normal ‎is GMO and that it grows rapidly and is more nutritious.

The director described the idea a‎s a ‘myth’ propagated by groups interested in taking over the country’s food system.

He said genetically engineering is actually a `cut and paste` technology where genetic material when inserted often arrives at unintended location.

He said up to 70 per cent of the world’s population is fed by small scale farmers and not from produce of genetic engineering.

He said that necessary infrastructure should be put in place to enhance food production and circulation in the country. (NAN)

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