General News of 2014-03-03

Anti-GMO group to hold demo on Independence Day

The Coalition of Farmers Rights and Advocacy Against GMOs (COFAM) will stage a demonstration on Independence Day March 6, 2014 to register their protest against moves by government to welcome genetically modified organisms in the country.

COFAM, which comprises farmers, labour unions, religious groups, political and civil society organizations are also against the Plant Breeders’ Bill, which seeks to give developers of GMOs seeds power to control farmers.

A member of the COFAM group, Ernest Yeboah confirmed the planned demonstration to Adom News.

He said the group planned the demo to coincide with the 57th Independent Day celebration to draw public attention to the implications of the Plant Breeders’ Bill on public health, wealth, and the economy.

Ernest Yeboah who also doubled as the Deputy Communication Director of the CPP, noted that the Nkrumah-led CPP won independence for Ghana in 1957 but the Mahama government is sacrificing the independence of farmers and Ghanaians for food that threatens to pose danger to the entire public.

He argued that the Plan Breeders’ Bill is designed to preempt the laws of Ghana and prevent farmers from freely saving, adding that the ultimate result of the Bill would be to put Ghana’s food supply into the hands of foreign corporations.

Yeboah noted that the demonstration would drum home the need to protect farmers and people’s right to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods.

He, therefore, called on the general public to participate in the upcoming Independent Day demo on Thursday, March 6, 2014 to show solidarity with Ghanaian farmers and the entire population.

The Plant Breeders’ Bill is currently at the consideration stage in Parliament, and Yeboah is challenging Parliament to educate Ghanaians about the positive and the negative effects of GMOs and the Bill so the public can make an informed choice.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Police Service has confirmed receiving a letter from the group seeking permit to demonstrate, but the police are yet to discuss the details of the demo with the group.

Public Affairs Officer of the Greater-Accra Regional Command of the Ghana Police Service, DSP Freeman Tettey, told Adom News the police will meet the group today, Monday to look at the details of the planned demo.

Source: Adom News
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