NABDA to strengthen biotechnology centres




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ABUJA – National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) has said that will strengthen biotechnology centres established  across six geopolitical zones and make them accessible to grassroot farmers.

Mr Babajide Iletoogun, agency’s Director of Media, made this known in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on in Abuja.

Iletoogun said that in addition to the six centres of excellence, seven biotechnology centres had also been in institutions across the six geopolitical zones in the country including the FCT.

According to him, the centres were established to assist the institutions in developing manpower and conduct research in biotechnology, to enable grassroots farmers to have access to research reports.

He said the agency was also working toward assisting farmers in the them to improve on crops in order to the poverty level.

Iletoogun said that the agency was collaborating with relevant international agencies such as the African Conservation Centre (ACC) Kenya; African Agricultural Foundation, African Harvest, Kenya and  other  relevant ministries in the country.

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He further said that the agency was also partnering with the Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria, Institute of Agricultural Research, Ahmadu Bello , , and the National Root Crops Research Institute, Umudike, Abia State.

“We are working with the National Cereal Crops Research Institute, Badegi, Niger State, to improve on rice.

“Cassava has been improved such that can be used for drinks among other , and also fortified with vitamins just as soya beans is also being improved.’’

In a separate interview, a Director on Bioresources Development, told NAN that with and research centres would optimise productivity and create an enabling environment for research activities in the country.

He explained that  NABDA’s mandate is to promote biotechnology activities that positively respond to national aspiration on , job and wealth creation, affordable healthcare delivery and sustainable environment.

According to him, the agency has established biotechnology centres at the of Nigeria, Nsukka (South East); of Port Harcourt (South South); of Ibadan (South West);  University of Maiduguri (North East); Ahmadu Bello University, (North West); and University of Jos (North central).

He said that the agency also the Bio-resources Development Centre at Odi, Bayelsa State, the National Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (NACGRAB) located in Moor Plantation, Ibadan. (NAN)

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