Back to Africa Check

Yes, Lagos state spent N800 million on Covid-19 tests

The Lagos state government has spent N800 million, over US$2 million, on 16,000 Covid-19 tests. That’s the claim a Facebook user made, flagged as possibly false by the platform’s fact-checking system

The user asks: “Can someone help me calculate how much it cost for each person to be tested? What is wrong with our leaders? Is there hope for the common man in this country?” 

Tests for the disease Covid-19 are paid for by the Nigerian government. But how much has been spent in the southwestern state of Lagos?

‘Statement made by health commissioner’

Tunbosun Ogunbanwo, director of public affairs for the Lagos state health ministry, confirmed the figure with Africa Check.

“Professor Akin Abayomi, the Lagos state commissioner for health, made that statement,” Ogunbanwo said.

At a media briefing on 21 May 2020, Prof Abayomi said the state spent between N40,000 and N50,000 on each test for Covid-19.

Abayomi said the state had spent about N800 million in carrying out 16,000 Covid-19 tests.

Lagos Nigeria’s worst-hit state

Lagos is the Nigerian state worst-hit by Covid-19. 

By 1 June, the state had over 5,000 confirmed Covid-19 cases, with 55 deaths. 825 recovered patients had been discharged from hospital. Kano state had the second-highest number of cases in the country, with 958. Motunrayo Joel 


Republish our content for free

We believe that everyone needs the facts.

You can republish the text of this article free of charge, both online and in print. However, we ask that you pay attention to these simple guidelines. In a nutshell:

1. Do not include images, as in most cases we do not own the copyright.

2. Please do not edit the article.

3. Make sure you credit "Africa Check" in the byline and don't forget to mention that the article was originally published on

For publishers: what to do if your post is rated false

A fact-checker has rated your Facebook or Instagram post as “false”, “altered”, “partly false” or “missing context”. This could have serious consequences. What do you do?

Click on our guide for the steps you should follow.

Publishers guide

Africa Check teams up with Facebook

Africa Check is a partner in Meta's third-party fact-checking programme to help stop the spread of false information on social media.

The content we rate as “false” will be downgraded on Facebook and Instagram. This means fewer people will see it.

You can also help identify false information on Facebook. This guide explains how.

Add new comment

Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
limit: 600 characters

Want to keep reading our fact-checks?

We will never charge you for verified, reliable information. Help us keep it that way by supporting our work.

Become a newsletter subscriber

Support independent fact-checking in Africa.