Kenya’s President William Ruto has vacated a 10-year ban on importation or cultivation of genetically modified crops (GMO) in the East African country, heralding a new dawn in the country’s shaky agricultural sector. During his third week in office, Ruto used his predecessor’s cabinet (outgoing) to overturn a decision that had been resisted for a decade, but will this be the magic bullet to resolving the perennial food insecurity? Experts are divided on this and the safety of GMOs.
On 3 October, Ruto chaired his second cabinet meeting since ascending to the presidency in what has become significant policy pronouncements in his nascent reign. “[The] cabinet vacated its earlier decision of 8 November 2012 prohibiting the open cultivation of genetically modified crops and the importation of food crops and animal feeds produced through biotechnology innovations,” said a cabinet dispatch. “By dint of the executive action open cultivation and importation of white (GMO) maize is now authorised.”
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