Kenya Has Capacity to Grow GMOs, Parliamentarians Say

Ten Kenyan parliamentarians drawn from various house committees have assured scientists of their support in biotech research. They said this after touring various agri-biotechnology research facilities during a biotechnology travelling workshop in Nairobi organized by ISAAA AfriCenter, the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) together with Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and the National Commission for Science Technology and Innovation (NACOSTI) with partners.

The legislators, who spoke after touring Kenyatta University (KU), Biosciences Eastern and Central Africa (BecA-ILRI) Hub, and Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO), some of the institutions carrying out agricultural biotechnology research, where they interacted with scientists, acknowledged that the country has the capacity requisite for dealing with GMO crops.

Led by Hon. Wilbur Otichillo, the legislators hailed the scientists for the commendable work they have done; noting that the research by scientists is imminent would go a long way in addressing farmers' perennial stem borer menace. "We are convinced beyond doubt that the country has the necessary capacity," he said. On her part, the chair of the education committee in parliament, Hon. Sabina Chege, thanked the organizers of the study tour, calling it an eye opener. "I have never had a chance like this to interact with as many scientists and get the right information on GMOs. I am entirely grateful to have been considered in this event," she said. She called on the scientists to organize more of such events to equip the legislatures with vital pieces of information in the subject to enable them make informed decisions as well as help in disseminating the right information to their electorate and fellow parliamentarians.

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