Home Health Nurses Sue Minister of Health, Nursing Council over certificate verification Guidelines

Nurses Sue Minister of Health, Nursing Council over certificate verification Guidelines

Health Workers, Nurses sue NMCN New Verification Policy
Credit: X

In a bid to challenge new certificate verification guidelines for nurses seeking opportunities abroad, eight nurses have taken legal action against the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMCN) and the Minister of Health. The case, brought before the National Industrial Court in Abuja, reflects the discontent among nurses regarding the revised guidelines issued by the NMCN.

The circular, which took effect on March 1, mandated that applicants seeking verification of certificates for foreign nursing boards must have at least two years of post-qualification experience within Nigeria. This requirement has sparked widespread dissatisfaction among nurses, particularly those aspiring to pursue opportunities abroad.

Expressing their grievances, Ode Evans, counsel to the complainants, emphasised the need for an adjournment to thoroughly examine the defendants’ preliminary objection. “We shall be asking for a date to enable us to file our responses,” stated Mr. Evans during the court proceedings.

In response, Justice Osatohanmwen Obaseki-Osaghae granted the adjournment and scheduled the next hearing for May 20. The judge also instructed that hearing notices be served on the Ministry of Health and the Attorney-General of the Federation, both of whom were absent from the proceedings.

The plaintiffs in the case, namely Desmond Aigbe, Kelvin Ossai, Catherine Olatunji-Kuyoro, Tamunoibi Berry, Osemwengie Osagie, Abiola Olaniyan, Idowu Olabode, and Olumide Olurankinse, sought to halt the implementation of the NMCN circular until the court determines the legality of the guidelines.

Among the reliefs sought by the nurses are orders to suspend the commencement of the new guidelines and restrain the defendants from impeding nurses’ constitutional rights to pursue career opportunities abroad.

They also urge the court to mandate the NMCN to continue verifying certificates requested by nurses within a reasonable timeframe.

Source: NAN

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