By Abubakar Garba
Over 42,000 practicing nurses in Nigeria migrated abroad in search of greener pastures in the last three years.
Mr Faruk Abubakar, Registrar of Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria, NMCN, said on Tuesday.
Hotpen reports that, NMCN is an umbrella body of Nigerian nurses and midwives, the only legal, administrative, corporate and statutory body charged with the performance of specific functions on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria in order to ensure the delivery of safe and effective Nursing and Midwifery care to the public through quality education and best practices.
Abubakar, who spoke while featuring on Channels’ TV programme, tagged: “Morning Brief”, also claimed that 15,000 nurses moved out of the country last year 2023.
“42,000 nurses left the country in the last three years. Last year alone, it was over 15,000, the number is increasing year by year”, he said while defending a new guidelines by NMC which mandates nurses seeking verification of certificates from foreign nursing boards and councils to compulsorily have a 2-year post-qualification experience from the date of issuance of the permanent practising license.
While regretting that the number of Nigerian practicing nurses migrating to other countries was fast increasing, he assured that the federal government was taking measures to stop the development.
According to him, the Federal Ministry of Health in particular, had initiative measures aimed at ameliorating the plight of Nigerian nurses, some of which he said were raising their salaries and allowances.
Recall that the nurses who have vehemently opposed the council’s new guidelines, claiming it was one of the ways by the federal government to deny them the right to seek greener pastures outside the shores of the country, embarked on protests across the country on Monday.
In Abuja, the nation’s federal capital city where the protest equally took place, the angry protesters vowed to resist any attempt to deny them their rights to pursue career opportunities.
The aggrieved protesters challenged authorities to look into the causes of their actions rather than embarking on wild goose chase.
Abubarkar, promising a better future for the nurses, said: “The Federal Minister of Health and the Minister of State for Health are working hard to ensure a very conducive working environment, with the provision of state-of-art equipment, and instruments, that will help them provide quality care for Nigerians.”
Speaking further, he said: “And I want to assure that within a couple of months, a lot has been integrated and provided in 2024 that will improve the welfare of the nurses that we are talking about. When talking about the salary they are talking about, I think it’s a general phenomenon, and I believe it’s a general thing.
“There is a lot of progress that is going on to review the salary and nurses are also included in that policy. I think it’s a general phenomenon, all other sectors are also complaining, and the government is doing a lot.”