Sunday, April 18, 2021 12:54 pm
By Chris Adetayo
I’m horrified by the idea that my entire personal details are in the care of a man who has openly declared sympathy for Al Qaeda and it’s amorphous cousins. I have heard Isa Pantami’s voice in online tapes, taken in the meaning of the words and the tone of his voice. Frankly, it’s scary what we now know about the man and the views he was expressing.
I read Farooq Kperogi’s article yesterday. It was a classic test paper in logical fallacies. There was the combined false equivalence and appeal to hypocrisy he employed in dragging in the Vice President Osinbajo. There was the appeal to pity (“his views were years ago and he has now gone to study in Harvard…”).There was the Red Herring (oh, the information about Pantami came from the telecoms companies who are losing money….). I could go on. It was an embarrassing piece of writing from an otherwise high-minded contributor to national discourse.
The Minister has also been hard at work, telling us how he has changed his views and converted Boko Haram terrorists. Well, we have no record of those expressed views undergoing any change in the public domain. He has not renounced Al Qaeda. Nor the underlying messages of Boko Haram. He has not informed us that it is not a matter of joy for non-Muslims to be killed for simply deigning to live.
Frankly, the defence put forward by the Minister and his supporters just don’t matter. On the strength of what we now know of him, there is simply no basis for such a man to hold any key national office. He should never be saddled with any role that requires and demands fairness, equity and equal treatment of all. His teachings tell us that he is fundamentally and innately unable to deliver on these values. That he holds an important national position where he controls the entire digital infrastructure of the country, including personal data of all citizens, is most unacceptable.
If Pantami will not resign, President Buhari should do what is necessary – sack him! With immediate effect. Many already consider the President a parochial one, and the evidence backing this view is mounting. He must not allow the Pantami episode to be added to the list. In any case, he owes non-Muslim Nigerians the assurance that he has not sold us down the barrel of Al Queda and it’s affiliates. Sacking Pantami immediately will go a long way in doing that.