MPs push govt to allow GMOs

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BLESSINGS MASHAYA
SENIOR STAFF WRITER
mashayab@dailynews.co.zw

LEGISLATORS are pushing for the government to allow genetically modified foods (GMOs) and crops imports saying despite the ban, people are getting them from neighbouring countries.

MDC MP for Hwange Central Daniel Molokele, pictured, told Parliamentary Affairs minister Ziyambi Ziyambi this week that there was a need to review the ban on GMOs.
“The fact that there is no policy at hand that has to be addressed and resolved because we already know that as Zimbabwe, we already have a lot of GMO foods and Zimbabweans are eating a lot of GMO foods.
“There is a contradiction that the government of Zimbabwe is burying its head in the sand, pretending that GMO food does not exist in the country. We need to address that policy gap as a country — that we give leadership direction because there is a lot of GMO food circulating in the country.
“We are importing a lot of food as a country. We are not self-sufficient. We get a lot of GMO food, especially from South Africa. I am challenging Ziyambi that the government of Zimbabwe should show leadership and be realistic and protect the citizens of Zimbabwe,” Molokele said.
MDC MP for Kambuzuma Willias Madzimure said there was need to allow GMOs to increase yields.
“Production is simply producing, but productivity is the yield that we get within a certain period. In other countries, the productivity is very high because of the GMO they are using. So as Zimbabwe, do you not think it is now the right time for us to reconsider our policy and also to say why do we have that policy?
“Are we protecting our people?  If it is to protect our people, why are we importing the GMO chickens? The potatoes that we eat from South Africa even the Lays potato chips, are all GMO products.  So minister, do you not think that it is time we also review so that we move with the rest of the people,” Madzimure said.
Ziyambi agreed there was need to discuss the issue and find common ground.
“Discussions on the use of GMO and cultivation of GMO is a discussion that is productive that we can continue discussing until we finally find a middle ground as to how to deal with it,” the minister said.

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