This, Ihekweazu said, while speaking during a Channels TV programme today.
He said the NCDC expects a number of tests to be conducted for each state, but only 26 states have been doing so.
As of Friday, 26 out of the 36 states in addition to the federal capital territory (FCT) have confirmed cases of the disease — totalling 981.
While the NCDC is improving on its testing capacity for COVID-19, the DG said it is worrisome that samples have not been sent by some states yet.
“It is a bit like pretending like the problem does not exist because you are not looking for it,” he said.
“In every state, we expect a certain number of people to fit the case definition of an acute respiratory infection without an underlying cause.
“If you take away contacts with travellers and with confirmed cases, the third part of our case definition which says anyone with an acute respiratory infection for which there is no underlying cause should have a sample collected to know whether they have this disease or not.
“So, we expect every state to submit a certain number of samples for testing every day. We have seen that some states have not submitted a single sample.”
He said the NCDC is doing an analysis on the number of samples it has received from some states which the centre will share with all the governors.
“We are going to send it back to them for them to look at their data and be honest with their people that there are no cases in their states,” Ihekweazu added.