Maputo: The Maize Pets are ravaging farms Nigeria as was declared by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Activists accuse Bill Gates who owns Monsanto as the main culprit with the aim to force Nigeria to adopted the GMO Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA), an Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) project .
In 2016 Nigeria granted permits for GMO Maize ‘Permit for Commercial release/ Placing on Market of Cotton (MON15985) genetically modified for lepidopteran insect pest resistance’ with Permit No: NBMA/CM/IM/001 and ‘Permit for Confined Field Trial (CFT) of maize (NK603 and MON 89034 x NK603) genetically modified for insect resistance and herbicide tolerance’ with Permit No: NBMA/C FT/001. They were signed by Director-General, Rufus Ebegba, on May 1 2016 of the National Biosafety Management Agency. His boss Mrs Amina J Mohammed former Minister of
Environment of Nigeria, is now the United Nations deputy secretary general. An appointment which activists in Nigeria have linked to her granting the Monsanto permits. The Bill Gates influence at the UN earned her the non-elected position. However, resistance to the adoption by Nigerian farmers and people have been very strong with growing opposition against adoption of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) crops in general. The situation was similar to what we faced here in Mozambique but with little resistance that could be offered against the mighty force by the giant Monsanto.
The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACBio) based in South Africa issued a comprehensive report
on similar tactics adopted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) in partnership with Monsanto to introduce the GMO maize MON810 in Mozambique . Several anti-GMO activists at a workshop in Pretoria, South Africa over the weekend condemned the biological warfare waged on Africa by BMGF and Monsanto in the bid to push GMO crops on Africa.
A Nigerian anti-GMO activist cited that Monsanto used the same approach in their bid to introduce the GMO tomatoes (that was outlawed in the United States in the 1990s due to health concerns of causing severe intestinal bleeding), called Flavr Savr tomatoes with pig anti-rot gene, to replace natural tomatoes. BMGF and Monsanto infected the natural tomatoes fields with Tuta absoluta moth in Kaduna and Gombe States . The anti-rot GMO tomatoes with pig genes was rejected by the mainly Moslem farmers in Northern Nigeria as soon as it was made known. They urged African governments to bring the matter to the International Criminal Court as well as filing cases against BMGF and Monsanto in United States courts for war crimes.