The National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) says it has, in conjunction with the Nigerian Customs Service, ordered that the genetically modified (GM) maize consignment illegally imported into Nigeria be sent back.
Dr Rufus Egbegba, the Director-General of NBMA, said this in a news conference on Tuesday in Abuja. “In view of the information and facts on ground, the agency, in fulfillment of its mandate and in collaboration with the Nigerian Customs Service, ordered the repatriation of the maize consignment with immediate effect,’’ he said.
He recalled that in October, the agency was informed of the importation of a large maize consignment. Egbegba said: “The NBMA had to step in to avert the release of the maize consignment into the country due to the failure of the importing company to obtain a GM seed import permit from the NBMA,’’ he said.
“Representatives of the company were invited to provide more information on the GM status of their import, after which the NBMA proceeded to obtain samples and conduct laboratory tests to ascertain the GM status of the imported maize. “The results of the analysis and the tests by an independent laboratory of six samples showed categorically that the maize imports were actually genetically modified maize.’’ Read more