The Federal Government on Monday said it would soon rebuild the Diagnostic Laboratory gutted by fire at the National TB and Leprosy Training Centre, Zaye Zaria, Kaduna State.
The Minister of State for Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, made this known in a statement issued by Mrs Boade Akinola, Director Media and Public Relations of the ministry, on Monday in Abuja.
The minister gave this assurance when he visited the centre to assess the extent of damage caused by the fire incidence.
He added that the visit was to ensure speed up of the process of repairing and putting the facility back to use in the shortest possible time.
Ehanire added that after the assessment of the damage being carried out by experts was concluded, the laboratory would be redesigned to prevent such occurrence in the future.
He also assured that the new design would consider good flow of service movement and all features for fire and bio-safety would be put in place.
The minister commended management and staff of the centre for the measures they took to stop the fire from spreading and also keeping services running at the facility despite the setback.
The Principal of the Centre, Dr Labaran Shehu, appreciated the minster for his unflinching support.
He added that the minister had visited the centre twice in the last three months to monitor and ensure the functionality and effectiveness of the facility in line with its mission and mandate.
Shehu pledged to continuously run the facility with all sense of responsibility and patriotism, adding that every resource committed to the centre by the ministry, development partners and NGOs would be utilised judiciously.
NAN recalls that fire destroyed the entire Bio-Safety Laboratory 2 complex, store, media room on March 26.
Other areas of the centre gutted by the fire included Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) section, training halls, GeneXpert room and all the offices of the laboratory scientists in the reference laboratory.
The cause of the fire is suspected to be from one of the air conditioners in the BSL2.
The adjoining building accommodating the BSL3, new Anti-retroviral Treatment laboratory and General Out-patients Department were saved from the inferno.
Meanwhile, the Institute of Human Virology Nigeria has said it is working round the clock to provide technical assistance to the centre.(NAN)