National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, Abuja chapter, Monday commenced a protest against the new verification certification guidelines released by the Nurses and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMCN).
The nurses were seen carrying placards at the NMCN’s office in Abuja, singing and displaying placards around the premises.
The inscriptions on the placards read, “Address unemployment among nurses, address quakery, address nurses welfare, and “#No to verification rules.
“Stop frustrating the Nigerian nurses; we are going through a lot already. Protect nurses, protect healthcare, NMCN; we say no to the verification rules, NMCN; don’t reduce nurses.”
According to the nurses their protest became necessary owing what they described as an attempt to hinder their freedom to pursue career opportunities and greener pastures.
They are asking the council to address nurses’ welfare, salary scale, shortage of staff, and other rights.
Recall that the NMCN issued a circular on February 7, 2024, revising the guidelines for requesting verification of certificates for nurses and midwives.
The council’s circular was released after a report of the deactivation of the verification portal on NMCN’s website since December 2023.
The circular signed by the Registrar of the Council, Dr. Faruk Abubakar, read in part, “A non-refundable fee per application shall be paid for verification by foreign boards of nursing as specified on the portal.
“Eligible applicants must have a minimum of two years post qualification experience from the date of issuance of the permanent practicing licence. Any application with a provisional licence shall be rejected outright.
“The council shall request a letter of good standing from the chief executive officer of the applicant’s place(s) of work and the last nursing training institution attended and responses on these shall be addressed directly to the Registrar/CEO, NMCN. Please note that the council shall not accept such letter(s) through the applicant.
The council also stated that applicants must have active practising licences with a minimum of six months to the expiration date, and processing of verification applications would take a minimum of six months.
It added that the implementation of the guidelines takes effect on March 1, 2024.