The head of COVID-19 testing centre in Kano, Nasiru Magaji, on Saturday said there is no definite date for resuming the test in Kano.
He told PREMIUM TIMES that although the laboratory was opened on Friday, they are yet to commence treating samples.
“We have opened the lab since yesterday (Friday), but you can’t run samples just like that when you open the lab. You have to do a lot of things. So, we are doing those things up (till) now,” he said.
Commenting on when they would resume testing, Mr Magaji said, “We don’t know until we finish everything. In a lab like that, you have to do all the safety procedures before you start exposing yourself.
PREMIUM TIMES, on Wednesday, reported how a member of Kano Task Force on COVID-19, Isa Abubakar, said the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control‘s COVID-19 testing centre in Kano suspended its operation due to shortage of testing kits.
On Thursday, Health Minister Osagie Ehanire said the centre was temporarily closed because some staff of the laboratory were reportedly infected with COVID-19. He also added that the centre ran short of some testing reagents.
But Mr Magaji said the laboratory was closed for routine fumigation which would last 48 hours.
For four consecutive days, Kano has not featured in NCDC’s daily update on COVID-19.
Nigeria’s cases rose to 1,095 with Kano recording 73 as of Friday night, according to the NCDC.
The COVID-19 testing centre, domiciled at Malam Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, hosts many northern states’ suspected cases.
Experts say testing capacity is a major step in fighting the spread of coronavirus.
The challenge faced in Kano typifies the challenge of testing Nigeria has faced since the first case of the disease was detected in the country in February. About 10,000 people have been tested so far, across the country, less than a quarter of the number tested in smaller African countries like Ghana and South Africa.