Sierra Leone: Every Nation College has no accreditation to offer Course in SRN

Stephen V Lansana
13 min readDec 22, 2023


PHOTO: The Registrar of the Sierra Leone Nursing and Midwifery Council, Matron Christiana Massally

State Registered Nursing Program is one of the programs that women in the Pure Sciences choose as a career path at the tertiary level after their senior secondary school education. However many of them apply to institutions without doing a background check to ascertain whether the institutions have accreditation or not to offer such courses.

Every Nation College, a Christian college in Bo, in the Southern region of Sierra Leone is one of the colleges that offers courses in State Registered Nursing (SRN) without accreditation.

The College has admitted over 200 students in 2023/24 academic year to pursue unaccredited SRN programme. For the SRN programme students are required to pay the following fees: tuition fees Le 6,110.

Other charges: Orientation, Matriculation and ID card: Le 1,150

Cost of Uniform: Le 500, totally Le 7, 760.

The Nursing and Midwifery Board which became the Sierra Leone Nursing and Midwifery Council in January 2023 is responsible for the monitoring of nursing training institutions, midwifery institutions, issuance of licenses, coordination of license examinations, accreditation of nursing schools and prescription of dress code and ethics for nurses, etc.

It could be recalled that Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) accredited Every Nation College with Category B status on the 15th of February 2022 to offer six undergraduate degrees such as B. Sc. Public Health, B. Sc. Agriculture, B. Sc. Computer Science, B. Sc. Theology, B.Sc. Business Administration and B. Sc. Accounting, but unfortunately, the said College is currently offering a Higher Diploma in State Registered Nursing (SRN) without accreditation.

The Registrar of the Sierra Leone Nursing and Midwifery Council, Matron Christiana B. Massally told Premier News that they have 12 accredited institutions implementing the SRN program in Sierra Leone.

She said that there are only three institutions accredited to implement registered nursing in the Western Area Urban: Faculty of Nursing in COHMAS offers SRN, B.Sc in Nursing and at some levels Midwifery, Bu Ali Sina Nursing at 58 Wilkinson Road offers SRN, and department of Nursing at the AMTA Medical College situated at PWD.

“We have visited Western Area Rural, but we have not given accreditation to any school to offer the nursing program,” she said. “The professional nursing programs start with SRN and then B.Sc. which are offered in the Urban but not in the Rural. No school in Western Rural District is accredited to implement any type of nursing program in Sierra Leone.”

She disclosed that they had been training auxiliary nurses in Maternal Child Health Assistance (MCHA), but it had been put on hold, disclosing that there was only one school in the Western Area Rural offering the MCHA.

Photo: This Category B accreditation was issued to Every Nation College in February 2022 to commence degree programs in six programmes. But unfortunately, the College commenced degree programmes years before getting an accreditation

“As long as nursing training programs are concerned, we only have implementations in the Western Area Urban,” she emphasized. “Any school [institution] that you see offering nursing programs in the Western Area Rural District, that institution is cheating the country and it’s a serious crime.”

In the North and North-West, she said that three institutions are offering SRN: Port Loko School of Nursing, the Saint John of God Nursing School Lunsar, and the Department of Nursing, University of Lunsar.

She added that the Department of Nursing at the University of Lunsar is only accredited to offer B.Sc. in Nursing and not SRN.

In Makeni, she stated that they have the Department of Nursing at the Ernest Bai Koroma University (EBKUST).

The Registrar said that two schools in Tonkolili District offer SRN. These are the Masanga School of Nursing in Tonkolili District, and the Department of Nursing at the Central University at Mile 91.

She disclosed that they have offered EBKUST a partial accreditation to commence a B. Sc. in the nursing program, noting that the partial accreditation means that they should commence the Bachelor’s program whilst working on the fulfillment of the other requirements. “If we go to EBKUST and they have not fulfilled all the requirements for the accreditation for B. Sc. In Nursing, then the status of partial accreditation will be withdrawn,” she asserted.

She added: “These are the only schools that are offering Nursing in the North.”

She said that in the Southern region, there are only two institutions accredited to offer Nursing programs: the Department of Nursing Njala University, and the School of Nursing in Mattru, Bonthe District.

She said that there is only one school in the Eastern province that offers SRN which is the department of Nursing Eastern Technical University in Kenema. She disclosed that they have a harmonized curriculum for SRN.

Speaking on Midwifery, she said they only have three schools accredited to offer that program in Sierra Leone, noting that the schools could now directly admit students from secondary schools into the midwifery program.

The schools include the National School of Midwifery in Freetown at the Princess Christian Maternity Hospital situated at Fourah Bay Road, the School of Midwifery Masuba in Makeni, and the School of Midwifery Bo.

“I want to stress on Bo district because we have heard that a Christian person is running a nursing program in his school in Bo,” she emphasized. “We are expecting so much from religious people.”

Photo: Two programs on this call for application are unaccredited. These are: the Faculty of Education and the SRN

“Every Nation is an unaccredited school. We don’t know about them,” she disclosed. “This is gross disrespect to the Council and the country as a whole because this Council has an Act of Parliament and the President has assented to it.”

She said that nobody should start any Nursing program without an accreditation. “I am so frustrated to hear that the owner of the college [Every Nation College] is a religious leader,” the Registrar said.

She disclosed that according to their Act, anybody who operates a nursing school or any establishment of school without the knowledge of the Council, that person should pay nothing less than Le 100 million, adding that the maximum fine will even go up to billions.

She said that Nursing is the backbone of the Ministry of Health and as such they should be trained in accredited schools.

She disclosed that they only have business with the 12 accredited schools and they don’t conduct Nursing Exam for any unaccredited school because they do not know about its existence.

“We have a file for every accredited nursing school in the country which has details like the name of the proprietor, the enrollment, examinations conducted, and the number of passes, etc,” she said pointing at the files in her office.

She pointed out that the Nurses Board was established in 1956, and the Board has always placed a premium on monitoring nursing schools since its establishment for public safety, noting that the ordinary person doesn’t know the school that nurses attend, “but the mere facts that people see you in a nurse uniform, they will conclude that you are a nurse and they will come to you for treatment when they are sick not knowing that you are not a nurse thereby leading to the death of patients or clients.”

Photo: A provisional admission to Every Nation College to pursue a programme of study leading to the award of SRN effective the 2023/2024 academic year which begins on Saturday 7th October 2023. After interviewing TEC, they told me to produce a piece of evidence [Provisional offer of Admission] so that they could commence an investigation. So, this document will be very relevant to TEC.

She added that an unlicensed person is not a nurse, adding that those pursuing nursing programs in unaccredited institutions would not be licensed because their institutions would be running the program illegally.

She called on proprietors to get their accreditations before commencing the nursing programs, adding that they are always at the office and at times during holidays just to ensure that they attend to people when they come to their office.

She pointed out that people [Proprietors] will just open kitchen rooms and call them academic institutions and start collecting monies from innocent people for nursing programs.

She explained that despite their challenges with office space and mobility [they only have one old vehicle], and added that they have hardworking staff [experts] who monitor nursing schools, stating that they need office space and mobility to more effectively facilitate them to perform their duties.

PHOTO: The Registrar of the Sierra Leone Nursing and Midwifery Council, Matron Christiana B. Massally displays the harmonized Curriculum that every accredited Institution should use to lecture students pursuing SRN.

She said that they always attend programs or activities that the accredited schools implement.

When asked whether she was aware of the sales of application forms for Maternal Child Health Assistant [MCHA] in Pujehun, she answered in the affirmative.

She said that the reason for the sales of MCHA forms was that they did an assessment and noticed that MCHAs are scarce in most hard-to-reach communities because most of them had retired, and others have died or upgraded themselves, adding that this is why the government in her wisdom reintroduced it MCHA] in six districts: Pujehun, Bonthe, Koinadugu, Karene, Falaba, and Kailahun should train at least 50 MCHAs because they lack them now.

“You see, Peripheral Health Units (PHUs) are the front-liners. They are the only people you find in a very remote area which means that certain areas need MCHA,” she said. “You can’t find a doctor there. You will not find an SRN there. You will not find a state-enrolled midwife there. But you will find the MCHA there as a front-liner for that community and she will do her referral.”

She stated that the mandate of the SRN and midwifery are at the secondary healthcare [at the bedside] and one cannot find them in remote communities unless health sisters go there to supervise or train but they can’t work there.

Speaking on the State Enrolled Community Health Nurse (SECHN), she said that in 2018, they did an assessment and the findings were not encouraging which made the Board members take unanimous decision to put the SECHN Training Programme on hold in all the 11 schools that were offering it in the country.

She disclosed that they [Council] encouraged Nurses with SECHN to enroll in the midwifery program in Bo and while some have basic specialties in Mental Health and pediatric care [with support from UNICEF], adding that they have trained most of them in midwifery and government through the Global Funds helped 500 of them to pursue the SRN.

Speaking on the criteria, she said that when institutions want to train nurses, 60% should be practical and 40% should be in the classroom, adding the said institution should have a hospital with nothing less than 150 beds with senior nurses at the hospital with the updated license to train those pursuing the nursing course, qualified fulltime lecturers who are nurses, skills Lab, and conducive lecture rooms.

She disclosed that they have their monitoring tools with 11 standards which contain everything that nursing is about, and if a nursing school has less than 60%, that school would not be accredited.

She said that after the students had completed their courses in an accredited institution, they do an internship Program for a year after which they are issued with a license.

“When accredited institutions complete their admissions, they will send the names of students who have been accepted to do SRN and we will do indexes, and the school will now continue with their training,” she said. “The said list [names submitted to us] will reduce but it won’t increase except if a student has a reference.”

She explained that when they give accreditation to institutions, they also provide them the curriculum for the said program, noting that they don’t give curriculum to unaccredited schools.

Roland B. C. Jones, the Public Relations Officer of the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) explained that before an individual [proprietor] operates any pro-secondary education, s/he should write a letter of intent to the Commission specifying the type of courses which they intend to offer and TEC will acknowledged it and then invite him or her to the Commission, adding that they will explain the three categories [category A, B and C] of accreditation to the applicant.

PHOTO: Roland B. C. Jones, the Public Relations Officer of the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). Friday, December 8th, 2023

He explained that Category A institutions are those that offer degrees on their own, category B are those that offer degrees through affiliations and Category C offers certificates and diplomas only. He disclosed that they have a team of experts for the various Categories who visit the location of the institutions, interview the lecturers, and evaluate them, and based on their evaluation, TEC will now write to the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education that the institution is fit for a particular category.

He said if an institution is not fit based on the evaluation, they will write to them and tell them to wait for two years to improve their facilities and then reapply.

He added that irrespective of the Category, proprietors who intend to open colleges or universities should submit their curriculum and lecturers’ qualifications.

Speaking on Every Nation College in Bo, he said that they [Every Nation College] might have a Memorandum of Understanding with the affiliated university [Ernest Bai Koroma University (EBKUST)] for them to offer those courses, adding that the affiliated college will supervise all their degree programs because they have accreditation for Category B with specific courses accredited to them.

“Before an institution with Category B accreditation runs a degree program, it must have an affiliation if not it is a serious crime,” he said.

TEC was surprised that Every Nation College is offering SRN, but they promised to investigate if Every Nation is offering SRN.

He said that they don’t want to disadvantage students because over the years many students had been disadvantaged, students from Dominion University, Global Professional University, and also African Graduate University, pointing out that they don’t want to see such happen again because it is heartbreaking.

“It is a crime for an institution with Category B accreditation to offer courses that are not specified in their license without the knowledge of TEC,” he said. You can go to jail. The Proprietor and the registrar can go to jail.”

He recommended that students who wished to pursue a certain course in a particular institution should check the TEC website or visit their office to find out if the said institution has an accreditation or not.

“Students should not only do a background on the institutions, but they should also check for the program they want to pursue,” he emphasized. “For instance, there are high demand for nursing programs. If you want to do a Nursing Programme, it is fine for you to come to us because we will definitely look at their files to see if they are accredited.”

He added that for an institution to receive an accreditation for Nursing, TEC and the Nursing and Midwifery Council will do a background check and it is based on the recommendation of the Council that TEC will give an accreditation.

He said that their experts will also go and check whether the said institution has a laboratory, Library, Hospital where nurses could practice. “If the Nursing Board is not satisfied, TEC will not give accreditation,” he said.

He encouraged educational institutions to offer programs that are accredited to them.

The Chief Executive of the Campaign for Human Rights and Development International (CHRDI), Abdul M. Fatorma said, “As a right-based organization, we are concerned about such flout of the law, and we expect educational institutions to be compliance with national laws and regulations that guide and govern their operations.”

He said that it is a worrying situation when one educational institution goes outside the laws of the land because they would not be able to impart the knowledge that society expects from them if they are taught lawlessness, when they go out that is what they will practice.

“The government should prosecute any institution that offers courses illegally and confiscate their current status of operations,” he said, adding that the government should also ban the institutions so that it would serve as a strong warning for other institutions.

“It is unacceptable both morally and socially to offer courses that are unaccredited,” the Chief Executive emphasized. “It is really sad to have some group of people in our communities who think that they are above the laws of our country.”

He called on parents, guardians, and students to check the status of the institutions before applying, noting that there are a lot of institutions that pose to be credible but they are not.

He added that an unaccredited program is illegal and fake and no future employer will recognize such an academic certificate. “That is the reason why the State needs to protect the citizens from the fraudulent institutions.”

He urged the Government to investigate the institution, and also emphasized: “Those institutions should refund all monies that their current students have paid.”

He said that fake degrees or programs undermine the growth and development of every nation and fake degrees undermine the confidence between society and institutions. “It is when people start scaring that most of our nurses have fake qualifications, they cannot go to those hospitals,” he added. “It is catastrophic. It brings a lot of problems into society.”

He pointed out that fake degrees undermine the confidence, trust, and development of our communities.

He called on the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on Tertiary and Higher Education to look into the issue of institutions offering unaccredited courses like nursing and make recommendations.

He called on the Executive branch of government to look into the previous parliamentary report on fake degrees and address it.

Premier News contacted the Registrar of Every Nation College, Mr. Momoh Albert Lissa but he refused to comment on this issue.

Our [Premier News] investigation shows that Every Nation College commenced programs without any accreditation and in the 2015/16 academic year, an attempt was made by the government to close the college for offering courses including degree programs without any accreditation from the TEC. Also, most graduates from this college have been denied employment opportunities because the courses they pursued were illegal. It was only in 2022 that Every Nation College was accredited to offer degree programs.

Efforts to interview the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on Tertiary and Higher Education proved futile.

By Stephen V. Lansana

Published: 22/12/2023



Stephen V Lansana

Stephen V. Lansana is a Sierra Leonean Journalist who work for Premier News, a subsidiary of Premier Media Group Ltd. Stephen writes on Health & Human Rights