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Foreign trained doctors accuse MDCN Registrar of bias, favouritism

As only 8 out of 689 doctors pass exam

By Elizabeth Uwandu

DOCTORS under the umbrella of Foreign Trained Doctors, FTDs, have accused the Registrar of Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, MDCN, Dr. Tajudeen Sanusi, of victimisation, favouritism and bias, as the Council released their results, stating that only 249 out of 689 who sat for the examinations passed.

This was just as the Registrar was quoted as saying that only eight out of 689 doctors were given licence where they studied abroad.

Speaking exclusively with Vanguard, spokespersons for the FTDs,  Dr. Adam Ibrahim, Dr. Kelechi Wodike, Dr. Towie and Dr. Victor said: “These are the signs of corruption and favouritism displayed right before our eyes.


“The acting Registrar said that only eight out of the 689 foreign trained doctors had licence to practise in the country of training. This statement is false because one of the criteria for the registration of the MDCN Programme which requires a letter from the institution of training stating that we are eligible to practise medicine in the country of training, was provided.

Verification of medical credentials

“We were also mandated to register with EPIC (Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials), which is an American body that offers verification of medical credentials to physicians and organisations worldwide.

How ironic that Dr. Sanusi is using a foreign body to verify medical credentials of foreign trained doctors. Since the acting Registrar often asserts that anything foreign is synonymous to incompetency or not up to standard, why then use an America-based body to verify our credentials?”

They urged relevant authorities, including the National Assembly, to intervene in the alleged mass failure of 440 out of the 689 doctors that sat for the recent MDCN assessment examination at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, UITH.

The FTD spokespersons’ stated, “We are Nigerians who underwent training to become medical doctors in various medical colleges across the world. These countries have subsequently found us qualified and accordingly certified. As patriotic Nigerians, nearly 700 of us returned to the country with the view to making our contributions to the nation’s health sector in consonance with the policy for certification of FTDs to practise in the country.

“We enrolled in remedial course for tropical studies at University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital which started August 1, 2017. On completion of the training and consequent assessment test, the Registrar declared a result showing only 243 passed, including six from Dental Surgery out of 689 and implying that 437 have failed and were, therefore, not qualified for issuance of licence to practise in Nigeria.

“We noticed that the media have been fed with lies, half truth, blackmail and biased narrations on the development portraying the acting Registrar, MDCN, Dr Sanusi as righteous and berating FTDs as incompetent. While in terms of narrations of bitter experience of space inadequacy, 700 of us were squeezed into a hall that was meant to accommodate 150 students, there was not enough seats provided so majority of our colleagues were standing while receiving lecture and there was no ventilation. We nearly suffocated, we were physically and psychologically tortured.

“The lack of standardized syllabus by the MDCN and lack of set cut-off marks before the exam had raised suspicions of unfair play in the minds of the foreign trained doctors. The programme keeps changing every year due to lack of standardisation.

“The remedial course was meant for tropical studies but there was not a single question on tropical disease in the final exam. On November 15, 2017, we wrote the computer-based test. We were supposed to start by 9.00 a.m but were delayed for four hours. We were not communicated on the reason for the delay only to hear from anonymous sources that Dr. Sanusi came with his questions and was trying to install the questions in the computers that morning.

“The MDCN Act gave the power to the host centre to set the questions and release the results accordingly, but Dr. Sanusi’s abuse of power was supreme. On November 17, 2017, the UITH conducted the clinical examination for us.

“In an exam where the examiner was supposed to record every step performed by the candidate, unfortunately for us, the examiners were busy chatting on their phones, texting and reading newspapers. They were not even concentrating on what we were performing. How could this be a fair assessment of knowledge? The article is meant to highlight the bias, spite, hatred and berating of FTDs by the acting Registrar right from the beginning; often asserting that FTDs were incompetent and cannot pass the exam. True to his disposition, the results he declared attest to that.

Screen shot of the results

“The result was posted on the MDCN website on November 18, 2017. Following questions about the credibility of the result, it was taken down from the website on November 21,   2017 and was put back again and behold, it was altered, as some names were added and some names were subtracted.

“A screen shot of the results is provided below, and indicates that it had been tampered with. This act alone has proven the charges of corruption, favoritism and bias of the acting Registrar, MDCN, Dr. Sanusi.

“Before the commencement of the exam, we had a meeting with him at UITH where he was castigating us; saying our parents wasted their money, that we only learned diagnostic medicine.

“He continued to berate us by saying that we are the sons and daughters of the elite and that only 200 of us will pass the exam. Majority of us were sponsored by federal and state governments and private individuals. His prejudice against foreign trained doctors was evident while speaking to us with total contempt. What a sentence before trial!

”During the meeting with the acting Registrar on his visit to Ilorin, he called four medical doctors among us by their names and demanded that they see him after the meeting. To our greatest surprise, those doctors he called out to see him all passed the exam. These are the signs of corruption and favoritism displayed right before our eyes.”


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