Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of the NCDC, gave the clarifications in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Abuja.
Ihekweazu who is reacting to an alleged test kits received by the Government of Nigeria that can only be used in molecular laboratories,
said NCDC is aware of ongoing studies and remains committed to scaling up testing capacity in the country.
He said that NCDC is aware of the validation studies that were on going and until these were completed, the agency cannot procure RDTs, because they do not know if they would work.
“These can give false results,” he said, adding that
test reagents which Nigeria have
and procured recently can only be used for Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), tests in existing molecular laboratories.
Nigeria News Agency reports that PCR was invented in 1983 by Kary Mullis.
is a method widely used in molecular biology to rapidly make millions to billions copies of a specific DNA allowing scientists to take a very small sample of the DNA and amplify it to a large enough amount to study in detail.
Ihekweazu noted that there have been important developments such as the use of Gene-Xpert machines, adding that
NCDC was also expanding its testing capacity using such technology.
NAN reports that Lagos State remains the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak in the country.
A breakdown of cases by states indicated that Lagos has 59; FCT 16, Oyo seven, and Ogun three cases.
Others are Enugu, Edo, Bauchi, and Osun with two cases each, while Ekiti, Rivers, Benue and Kaduna have one case each, respectively.
Edited By: Angela Okisor/RSA