DNA testing is generally done in a lab by trained technicians. UK police are now udnergoing two-week training courses to analyse DNA themselves, sparking contamination concerns. File photo: Supplied

Johannesburg - The SA Police Service (SAPS) had managed to reduced its forensic backlog by 92 percent, it said on Monday.

“Since [the] 2009/10 financial year, the forensic laboratories reduced [the] backlog from 59 023 to [a] commendable level of about 4440 case entries which depicts [a] 92 percent backlog reduction up to the third quarter of 2014/15,” said SAPS spokesman Lt-Gen Solomon Makgale.

This included backlogs in DNA and drug analysis as well as trichology.

“It is thus needless to mention that the perceived backlog in the forensic environment of the South African Police Service is misplaced,” Makgale said.

A lot still needed to be done to improve the forensic department, including increasing capacity by appointing and training forensic examiners.

Specialised equipment to support crime scene processing and forensic examinations was also needed, Makgale said.

“Emphasis is also strongly placed on the detective and forensic training courses that the police are currently presenting and this would further assist to strengthen the division forensic services,” he said.