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April 17, 2024

Ignore Critics, Continue to Deploy Biotechnology for Food Security, CASER Tells FG  

To achieve food security and fight hunger, the Citizens Advocacy for Social and Economic Rights (CASER) has urged the Nigerian government to ignore critics and continue its deployment of biotechnology. 

CASER, through its programme, Food Avail, stated that there is no way the country will make progress in food production without the adoption of biotechnology.

While briefing journalists in Abuja, the convener of Food Avail and the Executive Director of CASER, Barrister Frank Tietie, expressed regrets that despite the government’s resolve to address hunger in the country, some persons are bent on frustrating the efforts.

The old ways, he added, of food production are no longer sustainable, hence the need to embrace modern technology is imperative.

According to him, the release of genetically modified beans and maize is a bold step taken by the government to boost food production in the country.

His words: “We dispel the false and unfounded narratives driven by uninformed and economically jobbing groups about genetically modified (GM) foods which are products of biotechnology products.

“We maintain our support for the Nigerian government which began its GM research programme in 1987 and we are grateful to be reaping its benefits today.

“We maintain our support for the National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) as the National authority on all issues of biosafety. If the NBMA says GM foods are safe for human consumption, then they are indeed safe without any adverse effects on humans, animals, and the environment.

“Therefore, we shall continue our campaign for greater application of safe modern biotechnology in agriculture to guarantee the right to food and to end hunger in Nigeria,” the rights Activist said.

He said it is a thing of joy that the country is witnessing a revolution of technology in the areas of food production, medicine, and environmental sustainability through the deployment of biotechnology.

“We are glad that we are not only witnessing the science revolution in the area of food, medicine, and environmental sustainability, but we have also become the beneficiaries of visionary leadership this country has had at the time in this area of biotechnology by harnessing the benefits of biotechnology and this has made it to put in place a legal environment that places a premium on the safe application of modern biotechnology, technics, and genetic engineering.

“The Nigerian government as far back as 1987 has put legislation in place to encourage the application of biotechnology and genetic engineering as instruments of socio-economic development,” he added.

He however urged the critics of this modern technology to refrain from kicking against policies that are mass-oriented and join hands in supporting the government in its drive to end hunger using biotechnology.

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