National Biosafety Authority (NBA) undergoes stage II audit conducted by Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS). The audit started on 27th and ended on 28th March 2013. If the audit team led by Caroline Outa-Ogweno finds out that the Authority conforms to the ISO 9001:2008 system, it will make a recommendation to KEBS to approve certification of the Authority. According to Caroline Outa who also conducted stage I audit on the 13th March 2013, the system has already been established.

Stage II audit is a confirmation audit to ascertain that the provisions of the Standard are implemented. These include establishing conformity of NBA™s quality management system (QMS) to ISO 9001:2008 for the purpose of certification, determining the ability of the system to meet statutory, regulatory and contractual commitments and to evaluate effectiveness of the quality QMS.

The scope of the audit is to ensure and assure the safety (to human health and environment) of genetically modified organism (GMOs) in Kenya as well as customer related processes and other selected support process. Audit of key service sections and departments like corporate communications, supply chain management, information and communication, legal and corporate affairs, human resources, administration, technical services and finance were thoroughly conducted.

The ISO certification process started in earnest in mid-2012 with general staff sensitization workshops and internal auditors training. The quality management system was established through process mapping of the Authority™s activities and determining and developing the documentation required.

By the end of August 2012, the mandatory and departmental standard operating procedures (SOPs) were approved and all staff members were trained in preparation for implementation take-off. The first internal audit was successfully carried out in October, 2012 and corrective and preventive action measures were put in place.

If NBA is going to attain ISO certification this year, it will serve as a role model to many newly established organizations in Kenya that it is possible to work hard and attain the certification in three years after establishment. The certification will propel the Authority to greater heights and sets it as a world-class biosafety agency just as the vision testifies.

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