Importation of genetically modified maize was given the green light by Cabinet on Thursday in a bid to fight off a food shortage in the country.The Cabinet approved a budget of Sh9 billion to buy food for an estimated 1.3 million Kenyans who need emergency aid due to a severe drought.The decision comes a day after Public Health minister Beth Mugo conceded that unscrupulous traders could have sneaked in the grain, raising fears that Kenyans have been eating the gene maize.The minister had told a news conference on Wednesday that the ministry has no capacity to test the safety of genetically modified food.But a statement after the Cabinet meeting yesterday said that there would “be strict management of GMO food imports”.Only millers would be allowed to import it and they would be expected to use it to mill flour only. No GM maize should be used as seed.“All flour must be clearly labelled,” the statement from the Presidential Press Service stated.The Cabinet said food coming into the country must be certified by the National Biosafety Authority.The Cabinet also agreed that Sh9 billion would be used to buy emergency food.
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