Stiffer penalties for fake seeds merchants – Ojo
In line with the National Agricultural Seeds Act 2019, the Federal Government has commenced implementation of stiffer penalty for fake seed merchants, with fake seeds producers facing one to two year-jail term or N1to N2m fine.
The Director General, Nigerian Agricultural Seed Council (NASC), Dr. Philip Ojo notifying the public on the assent of the Seed Law, said before the assent, penalties for offenders under the repealed Seed Act was very mild and did not deter criminals from engaging in the act.
He further said engaging in seed business without accreditation from NASC; importation or exportation, or awarding of government seeds supply contracts to persons with no approval to trade in seed, false labeling or selling of seeds in open container, use of unbranded packaging materials, fraud or attempted fraud in the utilisation of seeds are examples of contravention in the new seed Act.
To ensure implementation of the Seed Act, Ojo said the Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and the United State Agency for International Development (USAID) had deployed a tamper evident traceability system that allows farmers and all seed users to reach the council for information on seeds’ authenticity purchased from any vendor, using SMS verification code.