"Ensure That GMOs Are Safe For Public Consumption" - Dr. Afriyie Charges NBA Governing Board

The Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Dr. Afriyie (MP) has inaugurated a 13 member governing board to steer the affairs of the National Biosafety Authority (NBA).

According to Dr. Afriyie, the governing board should ensure generically modified organisms are well checked before released to the general public.

Speaking at the inauguration of the 13 governing board, the Minister said "First of all health, if we don't take care, we could have a very bad impact on human health and animal health and then when you take the environment, when you let out GMOs into the environment, they have the potential to change your flora and fauna which means our ecological system could be disturbed"

He added that GMOs also goes a long way to affect a country’s economy.

Dr. Afriyie said "There are economic issues because we have intellectual property rights so if you don't take care before you realise, your agriculture will be depending on some external agencies"

The Minister hinted that the country must have a balance of which local products will always be available incase, there are economic challenges"

He was confident that the body will do a yeoman in protecting the lives and animals of the country.

Accepting the mantle as Chairman of the governing board, Prof. Charles Antwi-Boasiako said "We first of all want to thank President Akufo-Addo and the MESTI Minister for this great opportunity and we know like the Methodist always says, we have a charge to keep and a huge task ahead of us"

He added that although it is a huge that, they are prepared to continue with what they started four (4) years ago.

"Our main mandate is to control and manage the generically modified organisms that are coming to the public so that the health of the public and the environment are not endangered"

Prof Antwi-Boasiako also mentioned that his outfit has cow-pea from Tamale likewise generically modified rice from Kumasi Crop Research Institute".

He stressed that the idea is not to erode whatever the country has as generically modified organisms are concerned rather it is going to augment what the country already has.

"We are regulators so we are gong to make sure that the lives of Ghanaians are not endangered. We are going to make sure that we streamline everything. We are working for the public so whatever they say it is our duty to do the regulation so we will make sure that we control everything"

"This is what is going on across the world so we have to also make sure that we do same"

He added that the governing board will make sure that integrity is put at stake so that it does not do anything that will go against the Act 831 of the Biosafety Act 2011.

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Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith