Yemi Adedeji, Abuja
The National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA), has revealed that the imported Genetically Modified (GM) maize that was impounded at Apapa Wharf was repatriated back to its country of origin due to lack of authorisation.
Rufus Ebegba, Director General of the agency, gave the hint at a press briefing in Abuja, where he noted that the importers failed to comply with the NBMA 2015 act.
According to him, “the Agency, after an intelligence report on the arrival of the shipment, alerted the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) and both government agencies worked together to impound the cargo ship, while samples of the maize was collected and analysed. “
He noted that scientists from the Agency’s laboratory carried out the analysis while a private laboratory was also commissioned to conduct another analysis and that results from both analyses confirmed that the imported maize seeds were genetically modified.
Ebegba urged potential business individuals and retailers interested in importing genetically modified products to seek proper approval and recommendation from the Agency before doing so, adding that NBMA has the mandate is to ensure the safety of GM products to both human health and the environment.
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