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NBMA moves to implement new biosafety system guidelines

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NBMA

Samuel Bello, Abuja

The National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) has commenced the review and validation of some of its guidelines as part of its policy of strengthening the nation’s Biosafety system.

Director General of NBMA, Rufus Ebegba, on Wednesday, said at the opening of the review and validation meeting that the guidelines for review and validation included the NBMA Risk Analysis Framework, which details a precondition risk assessment for the release of any Genetically Modified Organism (GMO).

The Ebegba explained that the guidelines were in the process of development over the past two years, undergone intensive in-house assessment, critical review by stakeholders and needed final validation before being released to the general public.

“The guideline encompasses risk management plans and strategies to be employed if any potential risk arises from the practice of modern biotechnology. It also aims to strengthen the enforcement system for proper regulation”.

Other guidelines reviewed at the workshop are NBMA Administrative Manual, NBMA Communication Strategy, National Biosafety Emergency Response, Biosafety Information Manual, Institutional Biosafety Committee Guidelines, Biosafety Laboratory Manual and NBMA Inspection Guidelines.

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Ebegba explained further that the Biosafety Laboratory Manual ensures the accurate analysis of GMOs and the guaranteed safety of personnel working in the laboratory.

He also urged relevant stakeholders from different Ministries, Departments and Agencies who are involved in the National Biosafety Framework, to focus their attention principally on measures to ensure safer use of genetically modified organisms in Nigeria.

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