Attempts by biotechnology giant Monsanto to thwart the proper approval process for its GM corn in Pakistan have led to massive outcry by various stakeholders who recognize they have been deliberately ignored and betrayed by their own government. And the uproar against this high-level corruption has been so strong in recent days that Dr. Iftikhar Ahmad, head of a government subcommittee that tried to secretly aid Monsanto's efforts to push through its GM corn, recently resigned from his position.
"It's a deliberate attempt to keep these discussions and proceedings in low profile in order to avoid any outcry by the farmers and conscious citizens," said some outside sources to Pakistan's International News, concerning the committee's unethical behavior. According to Pakistan's Ministry of Food and Agriculture, officials have been meeting privately with Monsanto to discuss the mass cultivation of GM corn, instead of appropriately holding open meetings where stakeholder and other public input can be received.
"Besides holding pragmatic scientific debate, there should be extensive public debate on this important issue as it deals with what we eventually eat," added the stakeholders. Not only did the committee members in question help Monsanto try to bypass the rules for GM approval, they also allowed large-scale field trials of GM corn to occur without approval. They even tried to adopt the findings of these illegitimate trials which, of course, were compiled by Monsanto, instead of performing an independent review and petitioning for an environmental impact report.
Upon his departure, Ahmad tried to invoke pity by claiming that outsiders had unfairly hatched prejudice against his committee by accusing it of scandalous behavior. But the facts speak for themselves, illustrating what now happens all around the world when Monsanto infiltrates governments and pulls the strings of the corrupt and gullible to get its "Frankcrops" illegally approved.
"It seems the valid concerns expressed about the GM crops have been sidelined under pressure from the seed companies," said Ibrahim Mughal, Chairman of Agri-Forum Pakistan, concerning Monsanto's strategy of lying to government officials and to farmers about the supposed benefits of its GM crops in order to grease the wheels for fast-track approval.