Following a row accusing the Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, of abetting terrorism in the past and calling for his sacking, the African Youth Assembly For Peace, in partnership with the Coalition of Civil Society Groups, held a rally expressing support for the Nigerian government’s stance.
The rally which took place at the gate of the Kano State Government House on Sunday morning saw a lot of supporters carrying placards and pictures of the Communication Minister with inscriptions such as “Pantami is not a terrorist” and “Fighting Cyber Crime is the answer” showing their support.
Speaking at the rally, Mr Ali Waliyi, Director-General of the African Youth Assembly for Peace, characterized what is happening in Pantami as the work of the country’s enemies, who are unhappy with the linking of SIM numbers to NIN numbers in order to reduce crime and criminality.
“We bear due allegiance to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and we show support to the honourable minister of Communication and Digital Economy.
“We as Nigerians believe we are one country and we don’t have any apology to anyone from any part of the world or any part of the country that will come and cause any crises for us. They should allow us to manage our crises amicably.
“Today we are here to tell the whole world that the honourable minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr Isah Pantami is very clean and a very good citizen of this country. He is a man of repute and a man of integrity. We are aware of his efforts and we are aware of his hard work. We are aware of the effort put by his ministry to link SIM numbers with the National Identification Numbers in order to curb crime and criminality in the country.
It is on the basis of that that we realise that the enemies of this country are trying to sabotage the efforts of Mr President and sabotage the effort of the honourable minister of communication and the digital economy. As such as Nigerian citizens we say no to that and we stand by Pantami and we stand by Mr President. We are in support of Pantami and we are in support of Mr President. We are here to show our solidarity and we are here to show our support.
“We say no to enemies of Nigeria, no to enemies of Mr President and no to enemies of Pantami” the leader of the group declared while addressing the rally.