A civil society organisation with an anti-corruption agenda, the Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Management, has known as on President Muhammadu Buhari to right away sack the embattled Minister of Communications and Digital Economic system, Isa Pantami.
The group, in an open letter to the President on Monday, signed by its Chairman, Debo Adeniran, mentioned the statements credited to the minister had been harmful as they had been sympathetic to terrorist teams like al-Qaeda and Taliban.
Pantami has confronted public criticism for the feedback he made a couple of decade in the past, in certainly one of which he mentioned, “Oh God, give victory to the Taliban and to al-Qaeda,” and, “This jihad is an obligation for each single believer, particularly in Nigeria.”
In one other, he reportedly endorsed the killing of “unbelievers.”
In a 2006 speech, Mr Pantami publicly provided his condolences after the loss of life of al-Qaeda’s chief in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi whereas in one other video clip, he appeared to be on the verge of tears as he passionately described the militants as “our Muslim brothers” who didn’t need to be “killed like pigs”.
Pantami has responded by saying he was younger when he made the statements, a few of which he mentioned had modified due to his “maturity”.
The presidency has additionally supported the minister, saying Nigerians ought to be keen to forgive him.
Nevertheless, the group mentioned Islamic extremism relies on ideologies which might be tough for extremists to shake off.
“Mr. President, we want to state unequivocally that the truth that Pantami has developed the extent of orientation that made him uttered these grievous phrases and statements as said above, can’t be wished away by mere recanting which some folks in your cupboard are claiming he has finished.
“Ideological points are ingrained within the thoughts of those that pursue it. Even once they denounce it, they don’t seem to be to be trusted as a result of they will at all times return to that conviction that led them into accepting that extremism and for anyone who has mentioned that folks ought to be killed and that he’s blissful when he sees that and who has supported terrorists prior to now, we wish to imagine that it can not get out of his thoughts so simply.
“Furthermore, as a result of sensitiveness of the ministry that he’s supervising, he can present details about anyone to the terrorists, as a result of terrorists don’t work with their foot troopers alone, in addition they work with those that fake to be half and parcel of the first rate society and Pantami might be a few of these conduit pipe by way of which data are streamed to them.
“Moreover, within the space of the safety system, the ministry additionally might have a hyperlink with the way in which safety communications are being organised and deployed and Pantami might sabotage the method by facilitating entry to the terrorists to form of jam the communication system of the army and different safety businesses within the nation.
“Your Excellency, we’re of the opinion that Pantami is a harmful person who ought to not be a minister of the Federal Republic if all of the businesses of presidency that screened ministerial nominees, together with the Senate and the State Safety Service carried out their due diligence earlier than he was sworn in as a minister.
“A state of affairs whereby the Senate would ask a ministerial nominee to take a bow confirmed the extent of mediocrity amongst these in authorities contemplating the truth that governance is a severe administrative endeavour guided by worldwide finest practices. He’s certainly one of many tares sown by the enemies of the nation in your cupboard when Your Excellency was asleep.
“His continued presence in your cupboard is like leaving a venomous snake below the mattress and somebody goes to sleep or leaving a spark of fireside on the roof and somebody goes to sleep. He’s harmful to the peace and safety of Nigeria; he’s a safety threat to the nation. Even when he has denounced his extremist orientation, our thoughts would solely be at relaxation if he’s eliminated.
“Due to this fact, we’re aligning with calls in your workplace to right away swing into motion by eradicating and sacking Isa Pantami as Minister of Communications and Digital Economic system now and likewise ask the Division of State Providers to research him,” the group mentioned.
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