Nigeria’s Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Ali Isa Pantami, has admitted making some controversial comments on Al Qaeda and Taliban.
Reports reveal that many Nigerians had called on the minister to resign over the comments which were interpreted as endorsing the extremist sects.
Speaking during his daily Ramadan lecture at Annor Mosque in Abuja on Saturday, the minister renounced the controversial comments on the terrorist groups.
According to Isa Pantami, he now knows better about some of the comments he made in the past.
“For 15 years, I have moved round the country while educating people about the dangers of terrorism. I have traveled to Katsina, Gombe, Borno, Kano states and Difa in Niger Republic to preach against terrorism,” Pantami said.
“I have engaged those with Boko Haram ideologies in different places. I have been writing pamphlets in Hausa, English and Arabic. I have managed to bring back several young persons who have derailed from the right path.
“Some of the comments I made some years ago that are generating controversies now were based on my understanding of religious issues at that time, and I have changed several positions taken in the past based on new evidence and maturity.
“I was young when I made some of the comments; I was in university, some of the comments were made when I was a teenager. I started preaching when I was 13, many scholars and individuals did not understand some of international events and therefore took some positions based on their understanding, some have come to change their positions later.”