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Buhari’s government risks being branded as sympathiser of terrorism, HURIWA warns

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Buhari. Photo: TWITTER/NIGERIAGOV


Insists on sacking Pantami over link with Al-Queada, Taliban

Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has warned that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration may be designated a sympathiser of Al-Queada and Taliban should he refuse to dismiss his Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami.

“It is in the self-enlightened interest of the administration of President Buhari to clear its image of the suspicions that it is a sympathiser of international terrorism by sacking Pantami who had admitted espousing the teachings of Al- Queada and Taliban previously,” HURIWA said in a statement yesterday.

In the statement signed by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Media Affairs Director, Miss Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA insisted that President Buhari should dismiss Pantami due to his affinity and endorsement of global Jihadist movement.

According to the group, failure by Buhari to do the needful means he would be dragged to the International Criminal Court (ICC) by any patriotic group of citizens to canvass the claims that the mass killing of Christians in the North by armed Fulani herdsmen and Islamists were tolerated by the President himself because of his predilection to keep in his administration a man who had confessed to have backed Al- Queada and Taliban.

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HURIWA also recalled that the President himself had, in the past, spoken in favour of Boko Haram terrorists when he carpeted the President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration for degrading, decimating and eliminating terrorists belonging to the Islamic extremist group, just as Buhari had once, in the past, called for total Islamic Shariah law in Nigeria.

“Allowing Pantami, the self confessed supporter of AlQaeda and Taliban, to remain in his strategic post as Minister of Communications and Digital Economy means that, indeed President Buhari has an agenda to support Islamic extremists,” HURIWA said.  

It appealed to members of the civil rights advocacy movements in Nigeria to petitions the United States Congress, urging it to designate Buhari’s administration as a sympathiser of AlQaeda and Taliban and, thereafter, impose specific sanctions targeted at Buhari and his cabinet officials, including Pantami.  

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The group recalled that the minister had initially denied any links to jihadist terrorist organization based in northeastern Nigeria, Boko Haram and threatened to sue a Nigerian publication for defamation of character.

According to HURIWA, reports have emerged that Pantami had been placed on the US terror watch-list over alleged ties with Boko Haram leader. “Nigerian government has also denied the claims. In a tweet, Bashir Ahmad, Personal Assistant on New Media to President Buhari described the report as ‘fake news’, maintaining that the minister has never been on any U.S. watch list.”

HURIWA recalled, however, that in a volte-face, the embattled Pantami reportedly renounced his past controversial comments on terrorist groups including Taliban and Al-Qaeda.

“It is unacceptable that the minister can remain in office because he has just renounced his past, just so he can remain minister and to allegedly execute the pro-Islamic agenda that both he and his appointing authority are already implementing,” HURIWA insisted. 
The Rights group said the only way Nigerians can heave a sigh of relief is for the Minister of Communications and Digital economy Sheikh Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami to be dismissed from office and sent for DERADICALISATION.  

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