Kenya ought to remain firm on GMO crops

Editor, Reference is made to Francis Nang’ayo’s article, “Good crop, bad crop” (The New Times, August 22).

Editor,

Reference is made to Francis Nang’ayo’s article, “Good crop, bad crop” (The New Times, August 22).

Kenya should be commended for refusing to hand its food security to for-profit corporations that control the copyright to GMO (genetically modified foods) seeds. Also contrary to Mr. Nang’ayo’s claims, the balance of evidence points to the dangerosity of GMO “crops”.

The formulation of the WHO “confirmation” which he cites does not provide a ringing endorsement of GMOs as he tries to make us believe. All that the global health organisation states is that “no effects on human health have been shown as a result of the consumption of such foods”. It does not say they are safe, only that no “effects on human health have –yet – been shown”. Health effects from consuming such “foods” would necessarily take a very long time to manifest themselves.

We can also not be sure that was the industry to have findings that point to the danger to human health of consuming such “foods” they would share them with the public. Most findings of the studies that the industry releases are undertaken by researchers linked to the industry and the latter would no doubt have first reviewed those findings to ensure they were in line with their hard sell message.

Kenya is certainly to be commended for refusing to be stampeded into approving these products whose benefits are uncertain, but whose potential hazards to the health and food security of African countries could be very devastating.

Mwene Kalinda, Rwanda

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