A Kenyan court on Monday stopped the importation and sale of genetically modified (GM) crops in the country following a petition by campaigners.
The injunction blows the east African nation’s quest to use the technology to boost food security.
Kenya lifted a decade-long ban on GM crops on Oct. 3 as one of the measures to mitigate climate change effects, including frequent droughts.
The petitioner, the Kenyan Peasants League (KPL), told the High Court sitting in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi that they opposed the importation, cultivation and consumption of GM crops because they posed a health hazard to Kenyans, particularly the poor.
Cidi Otieno, the leader of KPL, argued that the government can import safer foods from neighboring countries.
High Court Judge Mugure Thande said in a dispatch from the court that the temporary injunction prohibits the government from importing or distributing any GM crops and foods in the country until the case that comes up for hearing on Dec. 12 is determined.
In lifting the ban on GM crops, Kenya joined South Africa, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Eswatini, Ghana, Sudan and Malawi in using the crops on the continent. Enditem