MURIC Urges Minister Pantami Not to Resign
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has urged the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Ali Isa Pantami, to ignore calls by some people asking him to resign.
There have been recent social media campaigns calling for the resignation of the Minister over an alleged sympathy for terrorists in the country.
The Minister has however refuted such claims, describing the campaign for him to step down as politically motivated after he renounced some the controversial statements he made in the past.
In a statement issued by the Director of MURIC, Prof. Ishaq Akintola, he urged the Minister not to let anyone blackmail him to resign.
The statement, monitored by our correspondent in an online medium IntelRegion, reads:
“A section of the Nigerian press published reports of calls being made by some people for the resignation of Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami over the fake news that the US had placed him on its watchlist. The second allegation was that the minister had made certain radical pronouncements in the past.
“It is a baseless call and it should be ignored. After all, the US itself has denied it. Dr. Pantami has been enjoying unhindered multiple entry to the US for a very long time.
“Even Facebook, the US based social media giant had Pantami’s picture on Facebook’s digital board for several hours as a mark of honor and respect during one of his numerous visits to that country.
“The campaign of calumny is being pushed by forces against the Federal Government’s NIN policy, Boko Haram terrorists, bandits, criminals in general and political IDPs (Internally Displaced Politicians). No one who has the love of Nigeria at heart will support such a malicious and frivolous allegation.
“It is a well-known fact that NIN is designed to expose the true identity of criminals like Yahoo Yahoo boys, bandits and kidnappers who use the internet and telephone to extort money from foreigners and families of kidnapped victims.
“They live a life of Mr. Jekyll and Hyde : respected gentlemen in the day but dangerous criminals at night and on lonely alleys.
“They have become jittery ever since the NIN policy was introduced by Pantami’s Ministry of Communications and Digital Policy.
“They are among those who stand to benefit from Pantami’s resignation. As for the political IDPs, their motive is to ensure that no project initiated by the current administration succeeds.
“The implications of Pantami’s resignation at this crucial stage are too gloomy to contemplate. It is a national security issue. The NIN scheme, our hope for dealing a technical blow on terrorism, insurgency, kidnapping and all sorts of criminality in the country will suffer suffocating palpitations.
“There will be a break in monitoring. It is better for us to allow the man who started it to finish it. If any problem arises after we have changed hands in the middle of its implementation, the new boss will easily shift the blame. It will then be a double tragedy. Let the beginner be the finisher. #beginnermustbefinisher
“In the interest of our great country, Nigeria, we therefore charge Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami to ignore calls for his resignation. An agitation for resignation which is not based on sincerity and truth must be resisted by patriots.
“This campaign for the minister’s resignation is in bad taste. It is pregnant with ulterior motives. Pantami must not surrender. He must not succumb to cheap blackmail. A captain does not abandon ship in stormy waters. When the going gets tough, the tough gets going.