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25th Meeting, 49th Regular Session of Human Rights Council – Presentation of the Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Michael Fakhri on Seeds, right to life and farmers’ rights

Report

“The type of seed system you decide to support will determine your ability to tackle hunger, famine and nutrition.”

In his report and presentation at the 49th Regular Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), on 14 March, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Michael Fakhri, outlined two types of seed systems. 

Coalition demands a ban of Bt Cowpea in Nigeria and neighbouring West African countries

Press release

A coalition of non-governmental organisations, farmer groups and research experts from various African countries call on the Nigerian government to revoke the permits granted by Nigeria’s National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) to the Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), Zaria, for the commercial release of genetically modified (Bt) Cowpea (PBR-Cowpea). 

This call was made yesterday in an online international press conference: Pushing Back Bt Cowpea in Africa, organised by Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) in collaboration with the African Center for Biodiversity (ACB). 

You can view the whole press conference here: https://youtu.be/UJNuqriwleM

African Union endorses draconian, undemocratic and corporate captured policy guidelines for seed and biotechnology for the continent

Alert

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The African Union (AU) has endorsed the continental guidelines for the harmonisation of seed and regulatory frameworks and the continental guidelines for the use of biotechnology in food and agriculture in Africa, despite fierce resistance from African civil society. 

On 16 February 2022, we found out that these two sets of guidelines had been endorsed by the “AU policy organs.” This was according to an email communication sent from the Department of Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment (DARBE), of the African Union Commission (AUC). And, despite requests in writing for access to these documents, they are yet to be put in the public domain.