THE Federal Ministry of Environment, on Friday in Abuja, commended President Goodluck Jonathan for signing the Bio-safety Bill into Law.
Mr. Rufus Ebegba, the Deputy Director, Bio-safety and Head of Bio-safety Unit in the ministry, gave the commendation in an interview with newsmen.
“This is a very great opportunity for Nigeria and I want to thank the President, Commander-in-Chief, (Goodluck Jonathan) and Honourable Minister and all the stakeholders.
“I also want to commend the National Assembly members for passing the Bill at this crucial time when the country is trying to diversify into other sectors of economy apart from oil sector.“
Reports state that Jonathan signed the bill into law on April 20.
According to Ebegba, the use of modern biotechnology would strengthen the economy and boost prosperity in the country with the opening of new frontiers for businesses.
He said, “The President’s assent to the bill is very timely in view of the fact that sister African countries have taken this path.’’
Ebegba said the law would enable Nigeria to domesticate its Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and prevent it from perpetually serving as a dumping ground for GMOs that could have adverse effect on the environment and human health.
The deputy director listed other benefits of the bill to include “determining in advance when hazards to human health and natural systems will result if any particular GMO is released into the environment and ensuring the prevention of such hazards.“
Reacting, Mr. Taye Akinyemi, the Director, of Press in the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, described the signing of the bill into law by the President as a right step in the right direction.
Akinyemi said that the absence of a bio-safety law in the country could discourage foreign investors and thus lead to the loss of foreign exchange.
“The worries of the populace regarding the consequences of modern biotechnology on economy would drastically reduce to the barest minimum standards.
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