Tuesday, July 29, 2014

(HERALD ZW) Zim’s first DNA testing centre registered
January 10, 2014
DNADaniel Nemukuyu Senior Reporter

The country’s first ever DNA testing centre has been registered with the Medical Laboratory and Clinic Scientists Council of Zimbabwe, bringing local solutions to paternity disputes and other civil and criminal challenges.
Although the African Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology (AIBST) is charging US$500 to conclude investigating a case, indications are that the charges will come down as more such facilities are opened.

DNA tests can be done to establish the child’s biological parents in maintenance cases, to establish a rapist in criminal investigations, identify bodies of accident victims, in murder investigations, tracing the family histories in chieftainship wrangles, and many other uses.

Over the years, paternity cases were being referred to South African companies, but AIBST — based in Harare — acquired the requisite DNA equipment and got accreditation mid-last year.

AIBST conducted DNA tests to identify bodies of the victims of the Chisumbanje accident towards the end of 2013.
AIBST president and chief scientific officer Professor Collen Masimirembwa, said the development was a major milestone in the history and development of forensic science in Zimbabwe.

“In Zimbabwe, for a long time, forensic science had remained behind using traditional and manual means like taking finger prints and using the magnifying glass for identification purposes.

“For drug crimes, there were no machines. The police and health (officials) are also working towards buying the same machines that we use here and they have come several times to see how we operate.


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