Samia calls for a ban on GM foods

Samia Yaaba Nkrumah, Chairperson, Convention Peoples Party (CPP), has expressed reservation over attempts to introduce Genetically Modified Foods (GM) into the country.

This, she said, would undermine and damage traditional farming practices and serve as unnecessary threat to public health, water resources, air and the natural environment.

Addressing the media during a demonstration against GMO at the Kaneshie Market in Accra on Thursday, Ms Nkrumah appealed to Government to research more into agro-ecological agriculture including agro-forestry, green manure, cover crops, soil and water conservation, mulching and use of local seeds.

‘These technologies are proven to be more resilient to climate change, and more sustainable and accessible to local farmers,’ she said.

The demonstration, which was to mark the International Day of Farmers Struggle was organised by the Coalition for Farmers Right and Advocacy against GMOs (COFAM).

Ms Nkrumah, who is the Convener of COFAM, called for a moratorium or complete ban on GM foods and their possible introduction into the food chain.

She observed that although Ghana had gained recognition for reducing poverty and hunger, all the benefits had gone to the southern sector of the country to the detriment of the northern part.

According to her, the introduction of GM foods and hybrid seeds are not the solution to the challenges faced by the northern sector but rather agro-ecological farming methods.

She said the ultimate result of endorsing GMOs would put Ghanas food supply into the hands of foreign corporations.

Ms Nkrumah said GMOs are bullets aimed at the heart of Ghana with the Plant Breeders Bill serving as the cross chain.

‘The Plant Breeders Bill currently at the consideration stage at Parliament is all about the imposition of genetically modified organisms into our food chain without public awareness and discussions on the decision,’ she added.

Ms Nkrumah called on world leaders to give lands back to tillers, implement genuine agrarian reforms, halt the grabbing of lands, and end the control over billion of lives exercised by few investors and transnational companies.

Organisations which joined COFAM in the demonstration were Foods Sovereignty Ghana, Centre for Indigenous Knowledge on Organisation Development, Peasant Farmers Association and other civil society organisations.

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