Ali Isa Pantami, Nigeria’s Minister of Communication and Digital Economic has renounced some controversial comments on Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
Pantami has been under fire over the comments which were interpreted as endorsing the extremist sects.
Some government critics and Twitter users have asked President Muhammadu Buhari to fire him if he fails to step down.
But, during his daily Ramadan lecture at Annor Mosque in Abuja on Saturday, he said he now knows better about some of the comments he made in the past.
Pantami said the campaign against him is politically motivated.
“For 15 years, I have moved around the country while educating people about the dangers of terrorism. I have travelled to Katsina, Gombe, Borno, Kano states and Difa in the Niger Republic to preach against terrorism.
“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 the 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 international events and therefore took some positions based on their understanding. Some have come to change their positions later,” DailyTrust quoted him to have said.
See Twitter trend below: