Farmers sue government over move to lift GMO ban


A past protest in Nairobi against plans to import GMO foods. PHOTO | FILE

A group representing small-scale farmers has moved to court to stop the government from lifting the ban on genetically modified foods.

The Kenya Small Scale Farmers Forum claimed the public is not well informed about genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

They claim the government has not sought the views of Kenyans on the issue and therefore the lifting of the ban would be illegal.

Through lawyer Paul Ngarua, the farmers claim that Ms Beth Mugo issued the ban on GMOs when she was the minister for Heath in 2012 and a task force was set up to investigate the matter. According to the farmers, the report by the task force was never made public.

The group appeared before Justice Mumbi Ngugi on Friday and wanted the case certified as urgent. Justice Ngugi, however, said the matter is not urgent.

The group has sued the Education Cabinet secretary and the Attorney-General.

The Health and Agriculture Cabinet secretaries, the Council of Governors and the National Biosafety Authority are listed as interested parties.

The case will be heard on September 24.

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