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House of Reps halts implementation of Nursing Council’s revised certificate verification guidelines 



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The House of Representatives has halted the revised guidelines set by the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMCN) for the verification of certificates for nurses and midwives.  

The decision was reached following a motion of urgent public importance raised by Rep. Patrick Umoh (APC-Akwa-Ibom) during Tuesday’s plenary in Abuja. 

The revised guidelines, dated February 7, 2024, were slated to take effect on March 1, 2024. The key points included a stipulation that applicants for verification must possess a minimum of two years of post-qualification experience from the date of obtaining a permanent practice license.  

This requirement involves securing a letter of good standing from the CEO of the applicant’s workplace and the last training institution attended, with the processing time expected to be a minimum of six months. 

The House of Representatives decision 

Rep. Umoh argued that the two-year post-qualification experience prerequisite was unreasonable, arbitrary, and unfair.  

  • He expressed concerns that it could impede the educational pursuits of nurses seeking further training or skills enhancement in foreign universities. 
  • Moreover, the motion highlighted the demand for applicants to secure a letter of good standing from their employers, deeming it a potential source of forced labor.  
  • This requirement, according to Rep. Umoh, could subject applicants to the arbitrary decisions of their employers, resembling a form of modern slavery. 

The House, adopting the motion, urged the NMCN to postpone the implementation of the revised guidelines pending an investigation by the House.

The House Committees on Health Institutions and Legislative Compliance were mandated to ensure compliance with this resolution and investigate the controversies surrounding the revised guidelines, with a report expected within six weeks. 

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