How To Get An NYSC Exemption Letter And What It Can Be Used For

In Nigeria, it is a known fact that every graduate is mandated by law to engage in the one-year compulsory National Youth Service Corps exercise in the country. Notwithstanding, graduates who have attained the age of 30 and above are exempted from participating in the national exercise and are required to obtain an official exemption letter or certificate from the scheme, indicating that they have exceeded the age requirement for active participation the National Youth Service Scheme. Other than the age reason, graduates can also obtain the NYSC exemption letter for other reasons approved by the government.

How To Register For The NYSC Exemption Certificate

Acquiring the NYSC exemption letter is not as rigorous as the year-long process involved to obtain the NYSC Discharge Certificate. To apply for the exemption letter, the applicant needs to visit any of the National Youth Services Corps State Secretariats and follow the processes below:

  • The NYSC office visit is to obtain an application for a National Youth Services Corps exemption letter from the relevant department. Regarding the fees or charges required, kindly approach the authorities for fee details.
  • Complete the application form with appropriate information under relevant sections. Attest it with your signature once completed.
  • When you have completed filling the application form, make sure that you attached all the documents listed in the “Required Documents” section of this page.
  • Then, submit it in person to the relevant authority at the office. Make the stipulated payment as directed by the officials.
  • After submission, the application and other documents will be forwarded for examination and verification processes.
  • Once the verification and validation processes are over, the application will be approved, and the officials will proceed to take the required steps to issue the letter at your institution.
  • When the document is ready to be collected, the applicant will be notified by the office, and the applicant can collect it by any requested means from his/her institution. 
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Required Documents

Below are the documents that one must possess to apply for successfully and collect an NYSC exemption letter.

  • Completed application form
  • Document for academic qualifications
  • Approved result document
  • Applicant identity document (if required)
  • Any supporting document (as instructed)

Not Everyone Is Qualified For An NYSC Exemption Letter/Certificate

Nigerian graduates, either home or overseas trained, have the stipulated qualification of (B.SC, B.A or HND) from approved or accredited institutions by (NUC, NTBE or NCCE) are eligible for Exemption Certificate. However, foreign-trained graduates must submit their Certificates to the Mobilization Department for Evaluation.

Categories Of People That Are Eligible For Collection Of NYSC Certificate Of Exemption

As clearly stated in the National Youth Service Corps Decree 1993 section 2 subsection (1), it is stipulated that “With effect from 1st August 1985, a person shall NOT be called upon to serve in the service corps if, at the date of graduation or obtaining his diploma or other professional qualification”:

  • He is over the age of thirty (30) years.
  • Has served in the Armed Forces of the Federation or the Nigeria Police Force for a period of more than nine months; or

He/she is a member of staff of any of the following:

  • The Nigerian Security Organization or
  • The State Security Service, or
  • The National Intelligence Agency or
  • The Defence Intelligence Service.
  • He has been conferred with any national honor.

Note: Only these categories of persons listed above are exempted from service and issued with the Certificates of Exemption.

Processes For The Collection Of NYSC Exemption Letter/Certificate

The processes for the collection of the exemption letter differ considering the location where the individual had his tertiary education. Bearing in mind that there are graduates who schooled in Nigeria and outside the country, the management of the NYSC came up with two different ways of collection and other NYSC procedures to suit the corps members.

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For Home Trained Graduates

For graduates who completed their tertiary education within Nigeria, the process begins from the Corps Producing Institutions, the tertiary institution attended by the eligible candidate.

  • The School submits the master list of their graduates alongside the Senate-approved result to NYSC.
  •  A print-out is processed by NYSC, classifying those to be called up for service and exempted. This print-out is sent back to the Institutions for verifications and corrections, after which they are returned to NYSC as an agreed/corrected document.
  • With the print-out, the Certificates of Exemption are produced, documented, and sent back to the Institutions for issuance to the appropriate persons.

It is worthy of note that the collection of Certificate of Exemption for home trained graduates is only done in the Institution of graduation and not in the NYSC office. 

For Foreign-Trained Graduates

The process for obtaining the exemption certificate for foreign-trained graduates is different from that of home-trained graduates, as stated below:

  • It begins with the evaluation of credentials and other related documents, i.e., an International passport.
  • After evaluating credentials, the foreign-trained graduate is then registered, and this is done physically at the NYSC directorate headquarters, Abuja. At the point of registration, the classification of who to be called up or who to be exempted is determined.
  • Certificates of Exemption are then produced for those exempted from service.
  • Unlike the process for home-trained graduates where the exemption certificates are collected at the candidate’s institution, for foreign graduates, Certificates of Exemption are to be collected at the NYSC directorate headquarters at the stipulated time communicated.

 It should also be noted that:

For this category of graduates, the Certificate of Exemption collection is grouped under the three batches of the service year, depending on the date of registration. This equally would be communicated to exempted graduates at the point of registration. And the Collection of Certificate of Exemption is strict with identification such as an International passport, and the bearer must be physically present.

How To Make Corrections/Other Complaints

If you encounter an error of omission or misspelled name/s or other corrections with your exemption letter, do the following:

  • Home-trained graduates are to address their issues or complaints through the institutions they graduated from. The school then forwards such cases with necessary attachments such as a photocopy of print-out to NYSC to rectify or further necessary action.
  • Foreign-trained graduates submit a handwritten application with the attachment of a photocopy of the data page of their International passport and original Certificate of Exemption, addressed to the Director-General, NYSC NDHQ, Abuja, indicating their address and telephone number.

You Can Also Print Your Exemption Letter From NYSC Portal

Printing the NYSC exemption letter online is not difficult at all. You can achieve this by following the steps below:

  • Visit the official NYSC webpage 
  • After that, you will need to enter your account details – username and password to access your account.
  • Once you are logged in, you will see an option for printing the letter.

Note: Both local and foreign-trained graduates who meet the exemption letter requirements can do this.

NYSC Exemption Letter
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How To Apply For The Replacement Of Exemption Certificate

In the case of loss of exemption letter/certificate, you are expected to follow some steps, which are highlighted here:

For Home-Trained Graduates

If you are a home-trained graduate, you are expected to write a letter of notification/request routed through your Institution of graduation and addressed to the Director-General of the NYSC.

To do this, you are expected to provide the following documents:

  • Police Extract/Report
  • Court Affidavit
  • Where available, a copy of the lost Certificate of Exemption

 For Foreign-Trained Graduates

While the process above is for home-trained graduates, the requirements for foreign-trained graduates are a little different. In the case of a foreign-trained graduate, you are also required to write a letter of notification/request addressed to the Director-General of the NYSC, but you will provide only a Police Extract/Report.

Note: You must bear in mind that the lost or burnt certificates will not be reprinted. Rather, you will receive a letter that proves you had it, and this will serve as the certificate when needed. The replacement comes at absolutely no cost. However, it can’t be obtained by proxy.

What Can The NYSC Exemption Letter Be Used For?

In Nigeria, a graduate can’t be given any government employment or military, police, or paramilitary job without providing evidence of the compulsory one-year national youth services or the exemption certificate for those who have exceeded 30. 

 Like the discharge certificate, the NYSC exemption letter can be used as part of the compulsorily required prerequisite documents needed to be given federal or state government employment in Nigeria and secure any private job across the country.

It can also be used in applying for the federal government social investment scheme N-Power, the National Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) when applying as a graduate. More than that, the letter can be used to apply for any other form of federal or state government intervention schemes both online and offline.


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