Kenya National Biosafety Authority Launches Year of Biosafety Advocacy
The Kenya National Biosafety Authority has embarked on a series of activities to raise awareness on biotechnology and biosafety. To quick start the year, NBA held of meetings for various stakeholders in the week of 5th to 7th February 2013, where researchers, consumers, traders and media were invited to discuss issues pertaining to biosafety and biotechnology and the role of NBA in GMO commercialization in Kenya.
Speaking to a section of media and communication practitioners in Kenya, Dr. Willy Tonui, NBA chief executive officer said "Concerns on safety of GMOs are still an important topic worldwide as evidenced by public and media comments recently. Therefore, NBA has declared the year 2013 to be the national biosafety advocacy year in Kenya. This will also be our theme for the second annual biosafety conference in August."
The 2013 Year of Biosafety Advocacy supports NBA's Strategic Plan that provides a framework for implementation and coordination of Biosafety in Kenya. Advocacy efforts around 2013 will also serve to advance the NBA strategic objective of supporting Institutional capacity in Kenya. Through the Strategic Plan, the Authority strives to establish and facilitate a regulatory framework that supports scientific and socio-economic activities of GMOs at various levels in the country.
Dr. Tonui informed the participants that the authority had already established offices at the Port of Mombasa, Kenya, Tanzania border post at Namanga, as well as Busia and Malaba posts at the Kenya and Uganda border for monitoring and surveillance movement of GMOs.
This article is part of the Crop Biotech Update, a weekly summary of world developments in agri-biotech for developing countries, produced by the Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, International Service for the Aquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications SEAsiaCenter (ISAAA)