Nigeria denies importing GM rice

Audu Ogbeh: Minister of agriculture


The Federal Government has denied that it had imported and flooded the nation’s markets with Genetically Modified rice.

The Director-General of the National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA), Dr Rufus Ebegba made the position of government known at a news conference on Wednesday in Abuja.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that an online news platform had alleged that the Federal Government through a firm had flooded the nation’s market with poisonous GM rice.

Ebegba said that there was no iota of truth in the report, noting that no GM rice had either been imported or released officially into the country.

According to him, `no GMO rice has been commercially released anywhere in the world.

He said that the Federal Government had banned the importation of rice and there was no indication that the ban had been lifted.

Ebegba described the online report as a falsehood and imagination of the writer, who “probably used a fake name.’’

He added that the report was intended to cause unnecessary panic and called on Nigerians to disregard it.

The director-general also urged them to join hands with the government to ensure safety in the practice of modern biotechnology in the country in line with global best practices.

He said NBMA was capable of regulating all GMO products in Nigeria, promising that the agency would not compromise on its mandate. (NAN)