A coalition of Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, [on August 27], alleged that moves were made by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, IITA, to introduce Genetically Modified Cassava in Nigeria.
The CSOs numbering 87 representing over 5 million Nigerians…raised the alarm in a statement signed by Biosafety Project Officer, HOMEF, Joyce Okeoghene. They argued that the proposed and confined trials of the novel cassava GMO demanded that the National Biosafety Management Agency, NBMA, should not consider the application, and urged it to direct IITA to carry out the test in Switzerland where the Cassava GMO was developed.
[They are] adding that recently IITA have teamed up with ETHZ laboratories of Zurich Switzerland to apply to carry out confined field trial in Nigeria of cassava genetically modified to ‘obtain storage roots with lower post-harvest physiological degradation after harvest (thanks to pruning) without any loss of the nutritious starch’. Also that IITA’s application to conduct ‘confined’ field trials of the Genetically Modified Cassava, which the institute wants to use a new gene silencing technology that has never been tested before, and IITA admitted that such an approval has not been given for this GMO cassava anywhere in any ‘jurisdiction’ in the world.
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