By Nwafor Sunday
As the news linking the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, to terrorist groups, gains momentum, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, for the second time threw his weight behind Pantami.
Pantami had in a viral video, commended a notorious terrorist, Osama Bin Laden, and spoke highly of terrorist network Al Qeda.
Since the video surfaced online, Nigerians have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the Minister. Some on the other hand had advised the Minister to resign honorably.
Yesterday, the Presidency conceded that the views expressed by Pantami, endorsing some terrorist groups in the past are unacceptable.
Shehu noted that Presidency stands resolutely with him because of his work for Nigerians.
“The Administration stands behind Minister Pantami and all Nigerian citizens to ensure they receive fair treatment, fair prices, and fair protection in ICT services”, Shehu said in a statement.
However, fielding questions when he appeared on Channels Tv, on Friday, Shehu still supported the Minister, saying that “if the one who created you gives it to you that from being bad, you can become good, what says you should deny some other persons this right?”
Asked why the presidency let Adeosun go but was quick to defend Pantami, Shehu said the latter’s case only involved people probing his thoughts during the said lectures.
His words: “In the second case which is that of Pantami, you are probing the thoughts, what is called ‘McCarthyism’; you search the inner recesses of the minds of individuals, bring out things they have said, or they are about to say, or you think they would say, and use that against them.
“If Pantami had forged certificate before coming into office, the attitude (of the presidency) would have been different.
“We don’t remain in the same position. Don’t assume that things cannot change. If the one who created you gives it to you that from being bad, you can become good, what says you should deny some other persons this right?”