The minority leader of the House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu has joined calls for the removal or resignation of the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami.
This is concerning the Minister’s past controversial comments suggesting religious extremism.
The lawmaker on Wednesday raised the issue as a point of order citing a breach of his privilege. He said Pantami does not qualify to oversee the ministry of communications which controls the database of Nigerians.
He noted that the Minister occupies a very sensitive position and the comments should not be overlooked.
There have been overwhelming calls for the resignation or sack of the Minister over his pro-Taliban comments.
In reaction to this, the Minister renounced his radical comments, saying he now knows better but despite this, Nigerians increasingly called for his sack or resignation.
This led to a trend with the hashtag, #PantamiResignNow on Social media.
The opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) also called on the Department of State Services (DSS) to immediately invite the Minister for questioning and urged President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately sack the minister, “given the sensitivity of the issue at stake.”
– Overwhelming Calls For Removal –
Human rights activists, social media users, and even the opposition party PDP have called for the removal of Pantami over statements he made in the past in support of Islamic extremist groups.
The increasing calls follow the revealing of audio recordings of Mr Pantami’s past teachings where he declared support for Al-Qaeda and Taliban.
This generated debates on social media platforms with many Nigerians calling for his removal and others defending the Minister who is also an Islamic Cleric.
In response, Pantami denied any links with the groups. He, however, admitted making the controversial statements supporting the groups but said he has since renounced those radical assertions.
According to Pantami, the past radical ideas he was championing were due to age, immaturity, and limited knowledge. This excuse however has not calmed the Twitter storm which is threatening to sweep him from office.
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