Food safety and quality
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Focal Point Information

Organization/agency name (Full name):
National Biotechnology Development Agency
Contact person name:
Dr. Lawan D. Suleiman
Physical full address:
Umaru Musa 'Yaraduwa Express Way, Abuja, Nigeria
Phone number:
+234 8071721620
Fax number:
Country introduction

Nigeria signed and ratified an international treaty known as Cartegena protocol on Biosafety in 2000 and 2003 respectively and has equally signed the Nagoya Kuala Lumpur Supplementary protocol on Liability and redress to the Cartegena Protocol on Biosafety in 2012.

The Federal Ministry of Environment developed a Biosafety bill in collaboration with National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), Nigeria Customs Service, Nigeria veterinary Institute, National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Justice, Foreign Affairs and Education.

The Biosafety Bill was initially passed by the 6th National Assembly in 2011 but was not assented to by the President and it became time barred. The Bill is back to the National Assembly, has passed through second reading and public hearing and awaiting consideration and final passage at the Senate while in the House of Representatives, it has been committed to the committee of Whole; it is also awaiting consideration and final passage.

The Federal Ministry of Environment is the National Focal Point and Competent National Authority on Biosafety in Nigeria. It has a GMO Detection/Biosafety Laboratory domiciled at the National Biotechnology Development Agency and has also developed regulatory instruments such as Biosafety Policy, Guidelines & Regulations, Containment Facilities Guidelines, Confined Field trial monitoring and Inspection manual, National Biosafety Risk Assessment Framework, Nigeria Biosafety Socio-economic Consideration Guidelines, National guidelines on Biosafety Emergency Response, Draft Biosafety regulation on GMO’s Import & Export, GMO’s commercialization, Labelling, Packaging and transport.

The First Confined field trial (CFT) of GM Cassava (Biocassava Plus containing increased quantities of Iron, Zinc, Protein & B-carotene) in Nigeria was successfully conducted in 2010 at National Root Crops Research Institute (NRCRI), Umudike, Nigeria. Confined Field Trials on African Biofortified Sorghum (ABS) commenced in 2011 for the introgression of ABS traits into three adapted Nigerian varieties; National Biotechnology Development Agency is one of the participating institutions, while the Institute of Agricultural Research (IAR), Zaria has completed first multi-location trial of Bt-Cowpea which confers resistance to Maruca. Also, construction on Confined Field Trials on Nitrogen-Use Efficient Water-Use Efficient and Salt Tolerant Rice (NEWEST) is on-going at the National Cereals Research Institute (NCRI) Badeggi.

Regulatory framework:
Structure for GM food safety assessment:
Supplemental information:
Contact details of the competent authority(s) responsible for the safety assessment and the product applicant:
GM food safety assessment guidelines:
Conduct of GM food safety assessment:
Supplemental information on the implementation:
Stacked events
Regulation of stacked events:
Supplemental information on the stacked events:
Nigerian President has finally signed the National Bio-safety Agency Bill, which is a milestone in the domestication of modern biotechnology in Nigeria, into law. Recall that the bio-safety bill, sponsored by the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) was initially passed by the 6th National Assembly in 2011 but was not assented to by the president and it became time barred. This would allow for the safe application of biotechnology to boost economic development in Nigeria, and allow the country to join the league of countries advanced in the use of this cutting edge technology as another window to boost economic development. It will create more employment, boost food production that will put a smile on the faces of farmers and elevate hunger. Provide management of bio-safety and other related matters and it seeks to harness the potentials of modern biotechnology under a legal regulatory regime; ensure environmental, human and socio-economic safety while harnessing the benefits associated with the practice of modern biotechnology and its outputs and exercise the sovereign right over all the nation’s natural resources and authority to regulate access to such resources. The bill will allow Nigeria to commercialize Bt-cotton, Bt-maize, Herbicide Tolerant (HT)-soya beans, which are already in South Africa, Burkina Faso and Egypt. “This can lead to increased yield productivity to ensure food security and industrial growth especially in the ailing Textile Industries. It will also promote the quantity and quality of cotton that the Nigeria can export.
Production and trade
GM food/feed production:
GM food/feed imports:
Supplemental information on the production and trade:
LLP/AP incidents
LLP/AP incidents:
Supplemental information on the LLP/AP incidents:
Labelling requirement
Labelling requirement:
Supplemental information on the Labelling requirement:
Relevant links to documents and information prepared by the competent authority responsible for the safety assessment
Other relevant documents:
Country information last modified: