13 April 2021 By Ifeayin Osita
The Federal Government and Stakeholders in the agricultural sector have been called upon to overhaul the nation’s biosafety architecture and support agroecology for enhanced production and safety.
This is part of the resolutions at a one day stakeholders conference on the state of biosafety in Nigeria, organised by a non governmental organisation, Health of Mother Earth Foundation,HOMEF in Abuja.
The conference deliberated on the controversies surrounding Genetically Modified Organisms, GMOs and food safety in the country.
The Director of HOMEF, Mr Nnimmo Bassey observed that small scale farmers, herders and fishers who account for about seventy percent of the global food supply are among the most vulnerable to food insecurity.
Mr Bassey who also noted that guidelines for gene-editing and extreme GMOs are dangerous to food safety, called for a halt to the biosafety architectural regulations and the need to invest resources towards ensuring that farmers get out of poverty and hunger.
Some participants who emphasized the need for Nigerians to rise to defend the food produced and sold for consumption called for more Sensitization campaigns on GMO products.
In a remark, the Director General National Biosafety Management Agency, Doctor Rufus Ebegba while refuting claims on the existence of GMOs in Nigeria markets, pledged the commitment of government to ensuring that only safe and healthy GMO products would be approved and brought into the country.
In a presentation, the programme manager HOMEF, Joyce Ebebeinwe maintained that there must be effective policy review and actions to preserve genetic diversity, human and environmental health for economic resilience.