The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) and the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) have said that the United Kingdom's red list cannot stop the movement of its members from migrating to other nations.
Per information on the UK government's site, Nigeria and the other countries on the red list should not be targeted for recruitment by health and social care employers.
Reacting to the development in an interview with Punch, the NMA President, Dr Uche Ojinmah, disclosed that the poor treatment of Nigerian doctors makes them seek greener pastures.
“I don’t actually begrudge the UK for recruiting Nigerian doctors because it’s the poor treatment they are getting from Nigeria that’s pushing them away. If the Nigerian government and people place a premium on Nigerians, they obviously won’t migrate.
“It is okay that the UK is placing us on the lower rungs for recruitment but what about the United States of America, Canada, Grenada, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, South Africa, Germany, etc?
“Nobody can take away the freedom of movement; it’s a fundamental right. They can only define the terms”, he stated.
Additionally, the NARD President, Dr Emeka Orji, said doctors can always choose other nations apart from the UK to migrate to.
“The truth is that it is not only the UK that Nigerian health workers go to and even with this list, it only means that they will not only be headhunting our health workers. So, that doesn’t mean people can’t apply to work in the UK.
“I know that last year, the MDCN Registrar went to the GMC and the report we got that time was that they discussed how to mitigate the effect of brain drain in Nigeria.
“This is purely speculative but we believe this was part of what was discussed. We can’t confirm that but it is possible", Orji shared.
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