A leading DNA testing center based in Lagos, Nigeria, Smart DNA, has released a startling findings about the reasons people seek testing, the demographics of those tested, and the outcomes of the tests.
The comprehensive data analysis of all relationship DNA tests conducted at its facility between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023, on thousands of users, provides an unprecedented insight into the DNA testing trends across Nigeria.
Findings of the report showed that Lagos accounted for the highest percentage of tests, with 82.89 per cent of the total, followed by Oyo (3.29 per cent), Ogun (3.07 per cent), FCT (2.63 per cent), and Rivers (2.41 per cent).
This heavy concentration in Lagos, particularly the Mainland (68.14 per cent) compared to the Island (31.86 per cent), is likely due to the location of Smart DNA’s office in Lagos, the purchasing power of the state’s residents, and the high population density of the state, the report revealed.
On the test type, the report disclosed that the majority of tests (89.10 per cent) were conducted for ‘Peace of Mind’, followed by ‘Immigration’ (8.97 per cent), and ‘Legal’ (0.64 per cent). This suggests that individuals primarily seek DNA testing to confirm biological relationships for personal reasons rather than legal or immigration purposes, the report averred.
On gender of test requestors, the report averred that men were the predominant initiators of contact, making up 86.44 per cent of the first contacts, compared to 13.56 per cent made by women. This indicates that men are more likely to have doubts about paternity or other relationships and take the initiative to seek testing, it stated.
The report also disclosed that positive results, indicating that the man tested is the biological father of the child, accounted for 73.88 per cent of tests, while negative results made up 26.12 per cent.
“This suggests that in the majority of cases, the men seeking testing are indeed the biological fathers, but in more than 1 in 4 cases, the tested father is not the biological father of the child,” the report further revealed.
As regards ethnic group, the Yoruba ethnic group had the highest percentage of tests (61.23 per cent), followed by Igbo (19.07 per cent), Edo (6.78 per cent) and others (12.08 per cent), the report showed.
More tests were conducted on male children (56.62 per cent) compared to female children (43.38 per cent), the report averred, as it disclosed that this may suggest a cultural preference for confirming paternity of male offspring, although further research would be needed to confirm this hypothesis.
“The most tests were conducted on children aged 0-5 years (58.02 per cent), followed by the 6-12 age group (25.95 per cent). This indicates that paternity tests are mostly done on children when they are younger rather than when they get older. Men between the ages of 31-40 (40 per cent) and 41-50 (23 per cent) conducted the most DNA tests. This age group is likely to have young children and may be in a financial position to afford the testing,” it stated.
The report, however, assured that “Smart DNA is committed to providing fully accredited DNA testing services to clients in accordance with the highest international standards. This report aims to shed light on the current trends in relationship DNA testing in Nigeria, contributing to a better understanding of this important aspect of our society.”