All appears not to be well between Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission NIDCOM, and the Minister of Communications, Isa Pantami.
In a recent interview with SaharaTV, Mrs. Dabiri-Erewa, accused the Minister of using armed men to chase members of staff of NIDCOM out of an office space given to them by the Nigeria Communications Commission NCC. In her words
In one year, we don’t even have an office. The office we got which was given to us by NCC, we were actually driven away by the Honorable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Mr. Isa Pantami.
Within two days, he drove us out, with guns. What happened? The place was given to us by NCC. You know we all help each other. NCC as an agency of government, said there is a place you can use. We settled in and just as we settled in, I was in Ethiopia when I got a call. I thought it was a joke.
I came back from Ethiopia on Thursday, this happened on Tuesday. By Friday when I went to the office, armed men had taken over the place. I thought it was a joke.
Here is the thing. I am a government employee and so is he. This a government business. Do I go on the street and start fighting? I said no that I will take the higher moral ground and so I decided that I am not going to raise any dust about it. I have written to the appropriate authorities. I have complained officially but we let it be. He wants the place, let him take it. And that place is still there. A whole floor is still vacant.
As I speak with you, all our items are locked up. I don’t have computers, printers. Everything has been locked up. So after COVID19, we are hoping that we can get a space, move in”she said
In a swift reaction, the Minister took to his verified Twitter handle to dismiss her claims, saying ”It is a fat lie”
”THIS IS A FAT LIE FROM HER: The owner of the building @NgComCommission has faulted her lies on their social media platforms. The minister has never given that directives to any gunman. We need to be very objective in reporting. I have never sent any gunmen there, & I have no one.
THIS IS NOT A TRUE STORY: We need to balance a story before reporting. The Minister has never sent any gunmen since the building is not directly under him, but @NgComCommission they have issued a statement, saying her reports are not true. Why no fair-hearing if one is accused” he tweeted