Democratic Socialist Movement

For Struggle, Solidarity and Socialism in Nigeria

By - DSM


We Demand Improvement in Pay and Working Condition of Nurses’ and other Health Workers

The Campaign for Democratic and Workers’ Rights (CDWR), a campaign platform of the Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM), extends its unwavering solidarity and support to Nigerian nurses in their ongoing struggle against callous policies, attacks on personal freedom and neglect by the government. We call for the consistent and persistent struggle of nurses, their union, and other healthcare professionals to compel the government to address the pressing needs and demands of our nurses and other health workers.

By Moshood Oshunfurewa

Like every other worker in Nigeria, nurses endure the harsh realities of anti-nurse, anti-worker, and oppressive government policies. From tyrannical verifications at the mercy of CEOs and CMDs to the scourge of poor salaries and poor working conditions, in addition to the burden of high cost of living, Nigerian nurses face many serious challenges.

The Nigerian health system suffers from poor funding and poor administration leading to relatively poor pay, poor conditions, shortage of staff, obsolete equipment and inadequate facilities. The government always attempts to get round its failure to adequately fund heath care by employing divide and rule tactics and thereby triggers internal crises among health workers, and hinders optimal healthcare delivery to the Nigerian population. We call for solidarity among health care professionals, and on the unions and associations to consistently fight for the interest of members and the effectiveness of the healthcare system


Over 75,000 nurses and midwives have reportedly migrated abroad in the past five years alone. The “Japa Syndrome” has been erroneously attributed by government functionaries as the primary cause of the shortage of nurses in Nigeria. This is the basis for the current oppressive verification and registration policies which nurses are subjected to. Rather than Japa, which truly is also a factor, the major reason for the shortage of nurses in public hospitals is the government’s failure to employ an adequate number of qualified nurses and provide competitive salaries commensurate with the standard of services rendered. Qualified nurses often find themselves either unemployed or underemployed, while experienced nurses struggle to secure stable employment. This dire situation severely undermines the quality of healthcare delivery.

Government policy that frustrates the ambition of nurses who want to relocate abroad to seek greener pastures is despotic and reprehensible. If the government is responsible, it would make it attractive for nurses and other healthcare practitioners to work in Nigeria with better working conditions and living wages.


The devaluation of the nursing profession due to the blurred distinction between qualified nurses and untrained personnel is another major problem faced by the nursing profession. Limited career advancement opportunities and the exorbitant costs of nursing education further compound their plights

Better job opportunities, improved working conditions, and clearer career advancement pathways must be established for nurses. Government neglect and the prioritization of cheap labour in private healthcare facilities have created a situation where qualified nurses are left with limited options, compelling many to seek employment opportunities abroad.


We recognize nurses’ invaluable contribution to our society, their rights to better life and the failure of the government to adequately fund the healthcare system. Therefore, the CDWR stands united with Nigerian nurses fighting against oppressive verification and registration policies which undermine personal freedom. We hold that nurses like every other professional have right to work anywhere globally there is opportunity. We demand adequate funding and democratic control of public healthcare; decent pays and conditions which are globally competitive for health workers, and mass recruitment of nurses and other healthcare professionals. We call on the union of nurses and other health professional associations to fight for the above demands.


Join the CDWR if you are interested in the struggle for justice, fairness, dignity of labour, democratic rights as well as decent pays and condition at workplaces.

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