• Wednesday, 19 June 2024
Court Allows Importation Of GMO, Rules ‘No Evidence GMOs Will Harm People’

Court Allows Importation Of GMO, Rules ‘No Evidence GMOs Will Harm People’


Court allows importation of GMO, rules ‘no evidence GMOs will harm people’

Samuel Wathome 65, a small-scale farmer inspects his crop at his maize farm where he plants indigenous seeds at Kyeleni village of Machakos, Kenya December 13, 2022. REUTERS/Monicah Mwangi

The Environment Court dismissed a case challenging the importation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the country, stating that no evidence was presented to show they are harmful to people.


The case had been filed by the Kenya Peasants League--a lobbygroup acting on behalf of peasant farmers. 

Justice Oscar Angote ruled on Thursday that adequate public participation was achieved through a session at the KICC as well as a gazette notice.


According to the court, the petitioner made premature claims about the cultivation, importation, and exportation of GMO maize without a license because no evidence was provided.

"There is no evidence presented before the court by the petitioner to show that the fourth respondent is already engaged in food cultivation, processing import and export..." said Justice Angote.

The court also stated that the petitioner had not challenged the laws governing GMOs both internationally and domestically, and that evidence presented in court demonstrated that Kenya has a strong framework governing the viability of GMOs.

"Evidence before me has shown that the country has put in place a robust framework with inbuilt structures which must be met before they consider the use of GMO's." Justice Angote added. 

"The framework has been set up for the evaluation of GMOs foods to human ....evidence before the court shows that the international biosafety authority has the capacity to check on food assessment...."

According to the court, Kenya has several institutions tasked with dealing with the GMO issue in its entirety, so it cannot be true that all would conspire to expose the population to a disaster.

"This court has not been shown any evidence that the respondents and institutions violated the laws and regulations on GMO foods, specifically the approval to release maize cultivation, importation, and exportation.... "I dismiss the petition," added Justice Angote.

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