In Kenya, GMO ban casts shadow over biotech research and education

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University lecturers have said the ban on genetically modified materials has caused many students to opt out of biotechnology courses. The dons, briefing members of the Kenya University Biotech Consortium, said restriction on use and import of genetically modified foods had also affected research within the institutions.

Richard Oduol, a lecturer at Kenyatta University and the consortium’s chair, said students admitted to courses like genetics, agricultural biotechnology, industrial biotechnology and biosafety are opting to pursue other degrees. “The effect of the GMO ban on education is real. Most students perceive them as terminal courses because they will not be able to apply what they learn after graduating,” he said. Joel Ochieng, a lecturer at University of Nairobi’s Centre for Biotechnology and Bioinformatics, noted that the number of inter-course transfers away from biotechnology had reached an all-time high.

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Ban on GMO now dampens biotechnology courses uptake

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