Events at SCIFODE

By Arthur M. Makara
The letter from the President to the Speaker of Parliament on key issues that need to be addressed in the National Biosafety Bill before he can sign it into law was my biggest disappointment of the year. At first, when the letter showed up on the social media channels, I could not believe that it was genuine because looking at it closely, it had many shortfalls.
But being from the President and bearing his signature, and seeing no one from his office come out to dismiss it automatically authenticated it. The President did not come out to say anything contrary to what was circulating and what eventually appeared in the traditional media—the Monitor and New Vision of Friday 29th December 2017.

The full article was published in the New Vision 

By Michael J. Ssali

Last week, Uganda hosted a three-day high-level conference on the application of science, technology, and innovation in harnessing African agricultural transformation at Speke Resort, Munyonyo.
It attracted delegates from across the world, mainly agricultural biotechnology scientists, farmers’ group leaders, senior science journalists, entrepreneurs, and politicians, among others.
The theme of the conference was: “Integrating the path in Africa’s agricultural transformation.”
The event also coincided with celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology in Africa (OFAB) a major advocate and supporter of innovative technologies for agricultural transformation.
The celebrations included the recognition of journalists from across Africa for their committed effort in explaining agricultural biotechnology to the public.


By Peter Wamboga-Mugirya
The UN’s World Food Day (WFD) celebrations in Uganda highlighted the nation’s homegrown scientific initiatives and strong farmer support for public agricultural biotechnology as millions of citizens watched the live-televised event.

Vicent Bamulangaki Ssempijja, the Minister for Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, (MAAIF), took the lead in informing the nearly 500-strong audience that Uganda had advanced food crop research and development techniques via genetic engineering (GE) and will soon deliver better varieties, with higher production and productivity capacity when well-managed by farmers.

The Minister, who is in charge of Uganda’s largest employment sector, told his attentive audience that the GE techniques will not only boost food security, but also ensure food safety from biotech crops, superintended by the recently-approved National Biosafety Law. The audience was predominantly farmers, United Nations (UN) diplomats, local administrators, religious and civic leaders, school children, mothers and teachers.

The Article was first published on the Alliance for Science website

The article  was first published by Christopher Bendana Oct. 6, 2017.
KAMPALA—Biotech researchers here are celebrating the long-awaited passage of a bill this week that clears the way for large-scale field tests and commercial release of genetically modified (GM) crops. Uganda, with several engineered varieties waiting in the wings, is expected to join a handful of other African nations moving quickly to bring homegrown GM foods to the market.
Introduced in parliament in 2013, Uganda’s National Biosafety Act lays out a framework for regulating biotechnology, including the creation of a national scientific committee to oversee GM research. Critics argued that the legislation would threaten food security by ceding control of commercial seeds to foreign companies. They also claimed that GM foods would not be palatable, and that the engineered genes might escape into the environment and taint native varieties. Seeking to tamp down concerns, Uganda’s science minister Elioda Tumwesigye said at a press briefing here today that the government would safeguard indigenous crops by banking their seeds. “We may need them in the future as a standing point as we go on modifying,” he said.

Full article 



Address :

Plot 27 Nakasero Road, 1st Floor, Uganda National Farmers’ Federation Building, Nakasero, Kampala

Phone :



This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Flickr Gallery


SCIFODE produces a Quarterly e-Newsletter of Science & Technology. Subscribe to Receive Updates on Science & Technology
Subscribe now