National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) has advised Super stores importers and dealers in Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) products to `urgently’ formalise such dealings with the agency.
Dr Rufus Ebegba, the Director-General of NBMA gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday, in Abuja.
Ebegba, in his renewed advice urged “all super stores to comply with the NBMA Act 2015 to avoid disruption of their businesses.’’
According to the NBMA Act Part VII (22): “no person, institution or body shall import, export, transit or commercialise any GMO or a product intended for direct use as food or feed, or for processing without the approval or permit of the Agency.”
NAN recalls that earlier in the year, the agency had directed all super stores to declare all GMO products in their stores, as part of a survey to document all imported Genetically Modified foods/products in the country with a view to confirming their safety status and compliance with the NBMA Act.
The D-G said that the agency was not interested in disrupting the business of the super stores but to ensure that they complied with the NBMA Act 2015 and ensure safety and health of Nigerians.
“The agency is prepared to work with super stores to formalise their GM products in order to analyse and ascertain the genes of insert, and their safety to human health”.
He reiterated the agency’s commitment to ensuring proper regulation of modern biotechnology and its products, adding that the agency, “as an unbiased umpire, would not compromise the health and safety of Nigerians’’.