Open Letter To All Veterinarians By The Veterinary Council Of Nigeria
Affectionate and sincere greetings to all of you – leaders and key stakeholders of our great, noble and highly respected Veterinary Profession in Nigeria – from the Veterinary Council of Nigeria, your Council.
- As we all know, the Veterinary Council of Nigeria (VCN) is a statutory, regulatory body established by law in Nigeria for, amongst others, the regulation of Veterinary practice and practitioners in the Country and the education of Veterinary Students. In carrying out these regulatory functions, the Council engages and relates with all Veterinarians for optimal performance in service delivery.
- In addition to other responsibilities, all members of the Veterinary profession registered to practice in Nigeria (and elsewhere) are expected to show commitment and participate in the maintenance of veterinary practice standards through regular renewal of Annual Practice License (APL) which presently stands at Five Thousand Naira (N5,000.00) ONLY per veterinarian per year.
- Unfortunately, majority of our colleagues both in private and public sector are lacking in keeping to this agreed statutory obligation to the Council. It is sad to point out here that most veterinarians have outstanding payments for APL running into as much as over 20 years. This, to say the least, is disheartening as it is worrisome
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- In the past (about) four months that I have headed the Council’s Administration and Secretariat as your Acting Registrar, I have treated over fifty cases of colleagues who only seek for renewal of their practice licenses when they are in dare need of one form of attestation or the other from the Council that would enable them obtain different favours from governments (both local and foreign), multinational organisations, etc. This should not be the case if really we are proud of and respect/love the Veterinary profession that we belong to; rather renewal of APL should be routine and not tied to any other reason outside maintaining our position when we received the Veterinary Oath at graduation.
- At this point, my dear and highly esteemed employers (for so you are as am but your servant), I am constrained to put in place some mechanisms that would change the current deplorable APL situation for the better in order to save the face of our beloved profession
- Firstly, I have to approach, through this medium, all of you leaders and key stakeholders in the profession, as heads of private and public sector organisations with good numbers of veterinarians under your charge, to solicit your assistance in getting all veterinarians under your charge to renew their APL up to date (January 1 to December 31, 2021). We will appreciate it if this is effected soonest but not beyond end of April, 2021. The Council may be left with no other option than to apply its statutory powers to deal with any colleague who fails to comply.
- We are hopeful that we will not have any reason to resort to the above trusting that being highly responsible and law-abiding veterinary professionals, we will all comply byt updating our APL as appropriate.
- While looking forward to your giving this correspondence its deserved support widest circulation among veterinarians under your charge, please accept the assurances of my highest regards and esteem.
Dr Ezenwa Nwakonobi
Acting Registrar, VCN