KAMPALA, UGANDA: The Ministry of Internal Affairs has revealed that the number of men seeking Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) tests for their children has shot up all of a sudden in recent months as more Ugandans seek clarity on the paternity of their children.
According to Mr Simon Mundeyi, the ministry spokesperson, the percentage of men demanding DNA service for their children has increased by 70 per cent.
“Of recent, the number of people asking for DNA services has increased. Last week alone, we had around 50 people, who were looking for services of DNA at the ministry because they know that we do control the Government Analytical Laboratory,” Mr Mundeyi said, adding that most of those seeking DNA testing services are men who want to ascertain the paternity of their children.
The Government Analytical Laboratory is a testing centre with its headquarters along Portbell Road in Wandegeya, Kampala, the country’s capital.
The ministry spokesperson, however, did not provide the statistics for previous years but said that three years ago an average of three people would seek the services per month, a number which has since multiplied to nearly 100 people a month.
Of late, there has been a sudden rise in the number of cases where Ugandans are seeking DNA services, and despite it being expensive, many of those having doubts about the paternity of their children take the risk of carrying out these tests.
Last week, the Chief Magistrates Court in Mukono ordered that controversial lawyer, Male Mabirizi and his siblings undergo a DNA paternity test in order to ascertain whether they belong to the same father.
This happened on Mabirizi’s request after his late father’s mistress, Nalutaaya Stella presented a will in which the deceased was said to have excluded the controversial lawyer among his children.
In a bid to clear this confusion, the lawyer asked court for a DNA test on all those said to be children of his late dad.
Recently, Ssalongo Micheal Kasawuli Mukasa alias Samona, a local manufacturer and proprietor of Samona Products carried out a DNA test on his children and found out that many of them were not his.
In April, the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Dr Stephen Kaziimba, said 10 per cent of men deny fathering children.
Experts say that life can get complicated for people who get negative DNA results and advise that in case of this situation, they ought to seek the services of professional counsellors.