Kenya’s health minister ordered a probe Thursday on one of the East African country’s leading pathology laboratories over unclear and contradictory results of novel coronavirus tests. 

Mutahi Kagwe opened the investigation into Lancet Laboratories Kenya and other facilities after 17 teachers who tested positive for COVID-19 from samples taken to Lancet labs were informed after three days that their results had turned negative.

Noting that Lancet was also involved in a similar incident in the capital Nairobi, Kagwe warned that authorities would “definitely close them down” if the lab was found “not adhering to the standards.”

Defending the results previously issued by his institution, Lancet CEO Ahmed Kalebi said: “There are many factors that can scientifically explain why a person may test positive at one time on a sample then negative on a subsequent sample or even on the same sample.”

Kenya, which is witnessing a COVID-19 surge, on Thursday recorded 421 new cases, 570 recoveries and eight deaths, bringing the total number of deaths to 217, recoveries to 3,638 and cases to 11,673.

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