Call for Review of GMO Rules
Some stakeholders in the cotton industry have demanded the strict liability clause in bio-safety regulatory framework to be removed to increase output of the crop
In an interview with the “Daily News, the Simuyu Regional Commissioner, Mr Paschal Mabiti, from whose region 60 per cent of the country’s cotton is produced, said that cotton stakeholders want a more progressive sector.
“We, however, argued that it was also prudent to send more funds to local research institutions so that farmers can get more improved seed varieties.
“We want the sector to grow. And we also want trials of the Red American type of cotton so that even the southern parts of the country can start growing cotton. We also ex-pect that there should be connection between researchers and farmers.” He noted.
He gave an example of new initiatives which were initially opposed, but have now increased production in the sector.
He gave the example of how contract farming has boosted cotton production in the region from 99,770 tonnes last year to 116,000 tonnes, but added that a ‘scientific touch’ would increase the fortunes.
He said the average production peracre to 450 kg per acre, thought there are farmers who have sur-passed a 1000kg per acre.
The Managing Director of Nyakabindi Ginnery and Oil Mill Emmanue Silanga said the “Strict Liability’ clause notes that ‘a person who imports, arranges transit, makes use of, releases or places on the market a GMO or a product of a GMO shall be strictly liable for any harm caused by such a GMO “and that “the harm shall be compensated”
The suggestion by stakeholders will likely touch the ministries of communication, Science and Technology; Livestock Development and Fisheries and other stakeholders who are currently discussing the implications of the 2009 Bio-safety Regulations.