By Keffyalew Gebremedhin The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
“The changing lives of the poor will determine how people think about the [GMO] laws.”
– Sylvia Mathews, president of the Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Bill Gates says genetically modified organisms (GMOs) will end starvation in Africa. Certainly Ethiopia’s laws prohibit the use or production, distribution and utilization of GMO seeds, with limited exceptions.
However, the Gates Foundation and those companies it has invited in 2012 to Ethiopia are taking advantage of uneducated population to spread their GMO products.
Ethiopia could be a hungry country, but it should not be forced to eat what it does not like or appreciate, to keep foreign companies and individuals wealthy and wealthier.
One hears clearly the Gates underlining the need to handle GMOs carefully. What would happen if something goes wrong, as happened to Kenya’s corn two years ago that forced the government to declare corn emergency in the South Rift valley region in that country.
This is very cruel for a nation without sufficient know how and manpower to counter GMO’s adverse consequences. Why should billionaires force our nation to eat what our population does not want. TPLF may receive bonuses for doing so, since it is prepared to sell even the whole country to the highest bidder.
Above all, before his departure for good dictator Meles Zenawi, known by African diplomats in the 1990s as the GMO Ambassador has told them it is good for TPLF governance and its business!
What Meles started early on found foothold in the law only three years after his death, when Ethiopia under outside pressure from such as Bill Gates and the United States, got leeway amending that law for scientists to experiment, or for import of non-food seeds such as cotton – but not to become our nation’s feed. Of the prevailing confusion now in the TPLF regime’s position, so commented Addis Fortune in November 2014:
“Ironically, the same administration which has legislated this law, albeit under firm hands of the late Meles Zenawi, finds itself trapped between compliance to its own rules and advancing its growth ambitions with as little irritation as it can get…”
This is wrong, a huge gamble and illegal. That is why Ethiopians must ask for investigations and protection of their foods in the future!
Bill and Melinda Gates are selling the corporate chemical agriculture model to Africa, according to Organic Rising by pushing genetically engineered foods into the continent.
How the Gates Foundation operates is another story of its own class. In an interview with Addis Fortune on July 31, 2011, Sylvia Mathews, president of the Global Development Program in the Gates Foundation, noted:
“Only six per cent of our financing goes to GMOs. The project has transgenic and nontransgenic components. The benefits of these products are to the farmers. The changing lives of the poor will determine how people think about the laws. We respect the laws of the countries and that will determine what they want and where they want to be on the GMO issue. But as I said, countries will make their own choices on what is good for them.
On the importation of seeds and the ability to move products across countries, we will probably be working on our policy. For instance, eight new breeds of pigeon pea have come out from Uganda. In the next two months, they will move to South Sudan because they do not have a law prohibiting it. For South Sudan, right now, the top quality pigeon pea breeding seeds will make a very big difference.”
We know that Bill Gates is the largest shareholder in the largest GMO chemicals and seeds producing companies.
Organic Rising notes that as of today the UN says about 8.2 million people need emergency food aid in Ethiopia, nearly double the number six months ago. The response of Melinda Gate is “to boast in this interview (video) that they are saving Ethiopia from famine with GMOs.”
This is the first open admission to the international community by the Gates. Why now? Something must be afoot!
Du Pont enters Ethiopia’s seed market: Bill Gates – Meles Zenawi deal at work?