The newly appointed director-general of the National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA), Dr. Agnes Asagbra has pledged to continue building on the achievements of her predecessor, Dr. Rufus Ebegba.
During the handover ceremony at the NBMA headquarters in Abuja on May 2, 2023, Asagbra expressed her gratitude to Ebegba for his contributions to the protection of human health and the environment from the negative impacts of modern biotechnology activities and their products.
She assured the staff of the NBMA and the public that she would resist any actions that contravene the NBMA Act and only permit the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that have been confirmed safe for use in Nigeria.
Asagbra emphasised that the goal of the government in establishing the NBMA must be achieved and promised to use cutting-edge technology to boost the nation’s economy while protecting the environment and human health.
Furthermore, Asagbra commended the competence of the staff at the agency and promised to continue improving their skills through training and workshops. She solicited their support in order to discharge her duties effectively while operating an open-door policy that would enable them to work together to take NBMA to greater heights.
Ebegba, the outgoing DG/CEO, expressed his fulfilment in contributing his best towards the development of national policies and guidelines relating to biosafety and biosecurity in Nigeria. He commended his colleagues at NBMA for their instrumental role in achieving this feat.
The handover ceremony was attended by the incoming and outgoing DG/CEOs, as well as all heads of departments and units. Following the ceremony, Asagbra resumed work immediately and went around the offices to get acquainted with the staff of the agency.
Asagbra pledged to continue building on the achievements of her predecessor and to use her tenure to promote biosafety and biosecurity in Nigeria.
Also, she promised to resist any actions that contravene the NBMA Act and to promote the use of safe GMOs in the country. She has also expressed her commitment to improving the skills of the staff through training and workshops while operating an open-door policy that would enable them to work together effectively.