NYSC introduces new medical fitness policy for corps members after ICIR investigation

THE National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has reviewed its policy on medical fitness for corps members.

Under the new policy, prospective corps members are to undergo fitness tests at NYSC clinics across the country to ascertain their health status before partaking in the orientation course.

This is coming six months after an ICIR investigation which revealed how corps members falsify medical documents to deceive camp officials at the NYSC orientation camps.

The ICIR investigation titled: “How corps members falsify medical documents, feign illness to bypass NYSC protocols” published on April 16, 2022, detailed how some corps members with peculiar health challenges conceal their health status and attempt to participate in the orientation exercise which is always rigorous and strenuous.

The investigation revealed that the development makes it impossible for the NYSC to appraise the fitness or otherwise of corps members before subjecting them to rigorous camp activities and mobilising them for youth service.

The report highlighted how the practice has led to the collapse and death of corps members at the orientation camps in the past.

Following the report, the NYSC management promised to address the problem during an appearance on an anti-corruption radio programme, PUBLIC CONSCIENCE, facilitated by the Progressive Impact Organization for Community Development (PRIMORG).

To address the problem, in response to The ICIR report, the Director, Press and Public Relations of the NYSC, Eddy Megwa, on Tuesday, November 1, disclosed that prospective corps members are to undergo medical tests at Orientation Camp Clinics across the nation managed by the National Health Insurance Authority with the supervision of Consultants from tertiary health institutions before partaking in the orientation course.

According to him, the new policy begins with the forthcoming 2022 Batch ‘C’ Orientation Course.

The director said this would help the scheme ascertain the health status of corpers and to fish out those who lie about their medical conditions.




     

     

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    Megwa said, “In order to avail the scheme credible information on their health status and also protect them from exploitation by unscrupulous persons.

    “It is pertinent to note that the NYSC Orientation Camp Clinics across the nation are managed by the National Health Insurance Authority with the supervision of consultants from tertiary health institutions.

    “In view of the regimentation and physical demands of some activities of the NYSC orientation programme, the management of the scheme introduced presentation of Certificate of Fitness from recognised public health facilities by prospective corps members as a requirement for registration at the orientation camp.

    “The essence is to enable camp officials manage those who are not fit to undertake certain activities in the camp. This has been largely misunderstood, leading to extortion of some prospective corps members by fraudulent individuals in their bid to secure such documents some of which may not stand a test of integrity.“

    Nurudeen Akewushola is an investigative reporter and fact-checker with The ICIR. He believes courageous in-depth investigative reporting is the key to social justice, accountability and good governance in society. You can reach him via [email protected] and @NurudeenAkewus1 on Twitter.

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