By Luminous Jannamike, ABUJA
A civil society group, Concerned Nigerians, on Monday, urged the Department of State Security, DSS, to recommend the sacking of Nigeria’s Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Sheikh Isa Pantami, to President Muhammadu Buhari.
The recent public outcry against Pantami’s alleged support for Al-Qaeda had sparked fresh calls for the resignation of the Minister from the Federal Executive Council.
However, the CSO said the call was not just about the removal of Pantami from office, but it was about protecting the “interest of Nigeria”.
The convener, Concerned Nigerians, Prince Deji Adeyanju, said this in a letter addressed to the Director-General of DSS, Mr. Yusuf Magaji Bichi, in Abuja.
He said, “We write to bring to your notice numerous publications in the media about Sheik Isa Pantami, the Minister of Communications wherein he was quoted in the past supporting major terrorist groups – Al-Qaeda and the Talibans and describing Osama Bin Laden as a hero and better Muslim than himself.
“After public outcry and condemnation, Sheikh Pantami has come out to confirm that he expressed such views and regret ever doing so.
“Sheikh Pantami is too close to power and we urge you to advise the president from a security point of view to sack him in the interest of Nigeria.
“Also, we call upon you in the face of his admission, to invite him for questioning with the view of prosecuting him for supporting terrorism.
“It will interest you to know that many Nigerians are already wondering how he passed security clearance with your agency to become a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
Adeyanju, however, noted that terrorists and their sympathizers do not repent. Instead, they always look out for an opportunity to get close to power so they can strike harder.