The National Economic Council (NEC) has decided to lift the arbitrary ban imposed on glyphosate, a widely-used weedicide, in light of overwhelming scientific consensus that the substance is not harmful to human health.
“The 10-member council unanimously approved that the ban imposed on glyphosate should be lifted as it has now been scientifically proven that the substance is not harmful to human health, while recognising the concerns raised by various industries, particularly the tea sector,” NEC Secretary General Prof. Lalith Samarakoon told Daily FT. According to him, the ban will be lifted on all crops except for rice.
He said the decision had now been put across to the Agriculture Ministry to take the necessary steps to formally remove the ban imposed on glyphosate.
“The Agriculture Ministry’s technical committee has to now submit the recommendations and gazette it,” Prof. Samarakoon pointed out.
The NEC meeting on 22 February chaired by President Maithripala Sirisena was also attended by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Ministers Sarath Amunugama, Nimal Siripala de Silva, Mangala Samaraweera, John Seneviratne, Sajith Premadasa, Duminda Dissanayake, Rauff Hakeem, Malik Samarawickrama, Faiszer Musthapha and Naveen Dissanayake.