Perhaps paternity conflicts will now be more speedily and decisively resolved in the country without having to fly DNA samples to England or America as Nigerian courts and the police currently rely on. It should cost much less too. Why?
The Lagos State Government has built Nigeria’s first Deoxyribonucleic acid, DNA, forensic laboratory, according to the state’s Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Adeniji Kazeem.
Speaking to the media on behalf of Kazeem at a recent briefing in Alausa, Ikeja the state’s Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, Funlola Odunlami stated this at a press briefing in Alausa, Ikeja, said that skeletal work had already commenced in the new lab known as the Lagos State DNA Forensics Centre.
Last year, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode approved the construction of the DNA lab as part of the Criminal Justice Sector Reforms designed to solve crime through technology and fulfill an unmet need for DNA profiling – a forensic technique that is already global.
“The DNA forensic centre has just opened this month. We are yet to commission it. It is going to deal with other DNA matters like paternity issue. What we are doing now is skeletal work which we started this month,” Kazeem said.
However, Nigerians still have to pray hard and be vigilant that DNA forensic reports aren’t tampered with when the new lab kicks off fully after it is commissioned. In this regard, everyone should be interested in the personnel and processes put in place by government to make such forensic reports foolproof.
The briefing also addressed other matters.
“The Lagos State Government recognises the fact that the state is the commercial nerve centre of sub-Saharan Africa where all races converge for various purposes such as business, hospitality, tourism, among others. The government has therefore put in place mechanisms that will foster development and promote economic activities in the state by instituting agencies that will attend to matters relating to land grabbers, Special Task Force, donation of police vehicles for security, introduction of DNA forensic laboratory to archive blood samples of criminals, among others.
“All these actions are geared toward enhancing peace in Lagos State,” Kazeem said.