The National Biosafety Authority (NBA) last week halted the transiting of grains suspected to contain genetically modified organisms from a neighboring country.
The Authority collected samples and subjected them to laboratory tests to ascertain whether they were genetically modified. The products are believed to be from a neighboring country which is conducting confined field trials.
NBA Senior Biosafety Officer Standards and Technical Liaison Christopher Simuntala said the trucks were stopped from proceeding because the NBA wanted to subject the products to laboratory analysis.
“The Clearing Agent and Border officials were asked to hold on before the products could proceed. We just want to ensure that the products are GMO free. The products have permits from other relevant authorities and there is an escort for them but we just want to be sure they are not genetically modified especially that the country where they are coming from there is research going on although at confined field trials,” he said.
The samples were collected from a truck which was among three others already at the port of entry. Other trucks with the same products were expected to arrive in the country before they could proceed to the neighboring country.
NBA Chief Executive Officer Lackson Tonga said the Authority is mandated to ensure the safety of humans, animals and the environment and anything that is suspicious of will not be allowed either to pass through or come in the country.