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Opinions of Sunday, 5 January 2014

Columnist: Strider, Joe

Ghana To Soon Face Huge GMOs Judgment Debts

I have been keenly following the issue of the introduction of GMO foods into the country for some time now and I just want to add a few comments. *

I am first of all disappointed at the low level of participation in this debate. This has given biased scientists (I am a scientist by the way), uninformed lawyers and political players to have a field day making broad and far reaching statements. I believe everybody eats food so all must be well informed to partake of this debate.

Again, it looks like the political elite are in cahoots with giant multinational companies and they are using their political influence to push the evil ‘Plant Breeders Bill’ through Parliament and damn the consequences, which may not be pleasant at all.

While a lot have been said and continues to be said, I just want to draw our attention to one aspect of the law before parliament – THE OBNOXIOUS CLAUSE 23 which allows them to use their technology to alter our God-given seeds and claim intellectual property rights. I understand that law once passed supersedes any national law and you cannot go back once signed. But how can this be? Somebody (A Multinational like Monsanto) formulates a law in his country to give them huge commercial advantages and forces it down our throat with huge bribes through our Parliament. This is the worst form of neo-colonialism. Many of our parliamentarians do not even know they are mere pawns in this global war on our food.

My question is ‘Is somebody reading between the lines?’ Are we aware that though today, America and its Multinationals like Monsanto and Syngenta are smiling and enticing us with millions of dollars of so-called ‘aid’ (which is conditional on swallowing the toxic GMO Bill), they would turn on us and use those same laws against us and claim MASSIVE JUDGEMENT DEBTS once we renege on any part of the law? My point is, at one point, people will turn against the GMO demon and trash the law, as has happened in several places (

) because they discover the GMO’s cannot deliver what they promise and there are so many oppressive issues involved.

But as Americans say, ‘America only has American Interests and not American friends’. Once you bite the bait of this toxic bill, and something happens in the near future, those people who are waving a few million dollars at us will move into the shadows and out of the shadows will appear their vampire lawyers who will claim the little money this poor nation has in JUDGEMENT DEBTS. Hence we will have suit after suit in the courts and even if we lose ONLY ONE, the cost will forever damage the finances of this nation of ours now blessed with oil. They may give us a few million dollars in ‘aid’, but we may pay billions in INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY INFRINGEMENT DEBTS, and many of our farmers may commit suicide as happened in India. For an example of such lawsuits, just click this link, which gives you some perspective as to how the law works.

. Shocking but true! Or is it the case that there are some politicians and appointees in cahoots with these multinationals? This is a valid question to ask. In his New Year message, Bishop Dag Heward Mills stated that Ghana is being ruled by a few people’s love for money. This is exactly what is happening in this case. For the love of money, you will be amazed at how ‘knowledgeable’ Parliamentarians and the Presidency, who are supposed to be defenders of Ghana, will handle this most serious of issues.

I challenge the Attorney General and her outfit to study the law and tell us the full implications of what could be. They must actually hold public forums on this plant breeder’s bill. Not just sit there and brush it aside in the name of politics. They should do their work – go on the Internet and find out law suits in various courts in the United States, Canada and elsewhere that has to do with this GMO issue before making blanket statements supporting GMO’s. If government lawyers are not well equipped for this field, they should immediately send some young lawyers to train on GMO issues and tap other brilliant legal brains available in this country(there are many) before anything is foisted on us.

Where are we going as a nation? Our founding fathers, President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah and the Big Six would turn in their graves to discover that after a fierce fight that gave us independence from the British, a new form of neo-colonialism is emerging and being foisted cunningly on the unsuspecting people of Ghana. This form of neo-colonialism is worse than what we saw in the Tran-Atlantic slave trade because now we will have to buy food from ONE OR TWO GIANT MULTINATIONALS AND THEIR AGENTS ONLY. Food will therefore become a tool of political and economic control of nations that succumb to these laws.

The worse part of it is that intellectuals who used the taxpayer’s money and obtained big degrees are today leading the charge for these neo-colonizers. I am very disappointed. Because in a culture that views the words of a Ph.D. holder as the words of an angel, they should be more balanced in their utterances. They talk as if they are better scientists than European and other scientists in the advanced countries who have advised their governments to refuse signing on to the GMO tricksters and their laws. GMO’s may have some good points but by and large it is a MASSIVE EXPERIMENT THAT WILL TAKE US WHERE WE KNOW NOT. It may open a Pandora’s Box of issues we are not ready to handle.

I am calling on public spirited lawyers, doctors, educationists, lecturers, farmers, parliamentarians and politicians who are the light of this nation to arise and save us from this encroaching darkness. Don’t wait till it is time for voting and start disturbing us. This is a good opportunity to show us your real credentials. This nation must not go down on our watch!! I am calling on journalists who can research and inform the nation like the Kweku Baako’s, Kwesi Pratts’s of this nation to champion the cause of national freedom once more since their voices go far.

I call on political parties to take their stance for freedom and party leaders to prove their mettle now when we are being slowly dragged into the abyss. Scientists in the CSIR who do not swallow the GMO bait must feel free to speak out loud and not be intimidated by their paid friends.

I may not be the most brilliant of scientists, but by God, there is something SINISTER out there in these GMO matters and in the current Plant Breeders Bill before Parliament. Arise Ghana.