A group, Concerned Nigerians, has written to the United States Government through its Ambassador in Nigeria over extremist comments credited to Isa Pantami, Nigeria’s Communication Minister.
A newspaper report had last week said Pantami was on the US watch list for terrorism, an allegation he quickly debunked threatening to sue the newspaper. However, he changed his stance after evidence of his comments was unearthed. He claimed he was young and has now turned a new leaf.
He was quoted to have commended the killing of unbelievers, saying Osama Bin Laden, an Iraqi terror leader, is more Muslim than he is.
“We write to intimate you of remarks attributed to Sheik Isa Pantami, Nigeria’s Communications Minister in several media blogs in the country wherein he was quoted as saying he was always happy whenever unbelivers are killed by terrorist groups. It also further alleged that he had in the past openly supported and endorsed global terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and the Talibans. Pantami is said to have praised Osama Bin Laden describing him as a hero and a better Muslim than himself. He has not renounced these views in the face of new revelation by the media. His views are extremist views and a threat to a multi-religious nation like Nigeria.
“He is a senior member of President Buhari’s regime and we are of the view that a supporter of Mullah Omar and Osama Bin Laden should not hold a sensitive position and be in charge of of the database of Nigerians. We are confident that Mr. Pantami will not resign or be sacked despite the public outcry because President Buhari is drawn to men like him,” the letter read.