We, members of the Resistance and Solidarity against Agrochemical TransNational Companies (RESIST) question the consultation process of the NCBP and call for a democratic, transparent and scientific process in approving GMO applications.
1. The process of the consultation was done in haste and without the intent of ensuring the participation of the respondents. First, the NCBP should explain why it has to resort to an ‘online consultation’ whereas it can always invite persons to discuss serious matters in a meeting. Second, the NCBP gave the respondents only two-week notice to review the manual. We received the invitation for a consultation scheduled for January 30 only last Jan 25, thus we only have a few days to prepare ourselves for the meeting. With 392 pages to read and comprehend, and discuss with fellow members of our organizations, it would be impossible for us to thoroughly review the manual and come up with detailed comments. Does the NCBP really intend to hear the side of the respondents?
We are therefore apprehensive that the “consultation” you have called on January 30, 2012 is not genuine, as the process that you have conducted for these series of consultations suggests that the NCBP is not up to the task of ensuring a truly democratic decision making process in regulating the entry of GMOs.
We believe that consultation processes, especially those intended to formulate policies that affect people's lives and the environment, should be guided by the principle of public transparency which is essential to good governance.