Capacity Development, Key to Economic Growth – NBMA Boss

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By Chika Onyesi

Continuous training is an important tool needed to strengthen existing human capacity, if Africa must achieve accelerated economic growth through science and Tech.

The Director General, National Biosafety Management Agency, Dr. Rufus Ebegba, who made this assertion, believes Africa does not lack capacity for development but needs to strengthen what already exists.

Ebegba was speaking on the need for capacity training in Nigeria when he received participants attending GMO detection training organised by the NBMA and its partners,

“The capacity of Africa to solve her problems through science and technology must not be underestimated we however need to strengthen this capacity to drive our economy”.

He explained that the National Biosafety Management Agency was one of the bodies set up to ensure safe deployment of modern biotechnology for the sustainability of the nation’s economy and to enhance our green economy.

“We have developed guidelines and have established a modern-state-of-the-art GM detection and analysis laboratory to ensure that every genetically modified seed, grain and product that comes into the Nigerian market is properly tested and analysed for safety- which is our watch word”.

The training organised to build the capacity of GM detectors, is expected to provide participants with hands-on-experience in the analysis of new GMOs/LMOs and to improve their performance in areas of relevant laboratory practices.

Dr Ebegba said the Agency will continue to regulate development Agencies, research institutes, developers and importers of GMOs so that a holistic biosafety system can be achieved in Nigeria

Meanwhile, Head, ICGEB e-learning platform and programme specialist Felix Moronta, commended the DG/CEO of the NBMA for his doggedness in ensuring a holistic biosafety system in the country and noted that the ICGEB will continue to ensure that the e-learning platform will be properly monitored and enhanced for the benefit of the agency.

The Basic Laboratory Training on Living Modified Organisms (LMOs) Detection and Identification was organised by the Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), the Secretariat to the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) and NABDA.

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