The National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) has raised concern over Nigerians’ attitude towards Genetically Modified Organisms produces, saying Science is being misunderstood.
This is even as NABDA and Open Forum On Agricultural Biotechnology in Nigeria (OFAB) has indicated interest to partner Blueprint Newspaper in educating Nigerians on the benefits of science.
The Country Coordinator, OFAB Nigeria chapter, Dr. Rose Suniso Gidado, stated this when she led a team of science stakeholders to the Corporate Headquarters of Blueprint Newspapers in Abuja on Thursday.
Gidado who was received by Blueprint’s Managing Editor, Mr Clem Oluwole, said the visit was predicated on the need to partner with media organisations and the need to inform Nigeria on the importance of deploying science into Nigeria’s agricultural sector, saying if Nigeria is to be food secured, it needs GMO technology.
She said biotechnology can contribute immensely to the food security Nigerians are yarning to achieve.
“We are faced with a lot of challenges in our agricultural sector. If we don’t bring technology into agriculture, it will be difficult to achieve food security.
“The technology is to compliment the traditional seeds system and not to take it over. We are faced with lots of challenges, and the population is another, therefore we need to think out of the box, we need to bring in science and technology.
“If we don’t bring science and technology into agriculture, it will be very difficult for us to solve the challenges facing the sector, look at Brazil and Argentina, we were in the same class, but today they are far better off, now we import from these countries, we are importing the GMOs, 95% of maize and beans that we import are GMOs.
Also speaking, the senior technical Assistant, to the Director General, National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC) Dr. Folarin Okelola, said the Council is a bridge between the farmers and the seeds producers.
Blueprint’s Managing Editor, Mr Clem Oluwole, expressed concern over the challenges in the Nigeria agricultural sector, saying it has deteriorated since the advent of petroleum.
He said it is very important that the agricultural sector is taken seriously as most ailment Nigerians suffered from are all linked to the type of food consumed.
“We are interested in agriculture because food security is very important. The country is lagging behind in agriculture, therefore your visit here is good, be rest assured that our support tempo will rise again.