Nurses affiliated with the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives, Abuja chapter, staged a protest on Monday against the recently released verification certification guidelines by the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMCN).
The nurses expressed frustration, arguing that the new guidelines impede their ability to pursue career opportunities freely. They demanded that the council address issues such as nurses’ welfare, salary scale, staff shortages, and other rights.
The protest, observed by our correspondent, took place at the NMCN’s office in Abuja. The council had issued a circular on February 7, 2024, revising the guidelines for requesting verification of certificates for nurses and midwives.
According to the circular signed by the Registrar, Dr. Faruk Abubakar, applicants must pay a non-refundable fee per application for verification to foreign nursing boards, covering courier services to the applicant’s training institution(s) and workplace.
Eligible applicants must possess a minimum of two years of post-qualification experience and active practicing licenses with at least six months to expiration. Verification processing is expected to take a minimum of six months, with implementation starting from March 1, 2024.
During the protest, nurses and midwives carried placards around the NMCN premises, expressing grievances such as addressing unemployment, quackery, and enhancing nurses’ welfare. They urged the government to focus on improving nurses’ conditions instead of introducing new verification rules.