Umno Man Pledges To Push Against Postponement Of Party Polls
Umno supreme council member Jalaluddin Alias will suggest for the party polls not be postponed to next year.
Jalaluddin said he will do so during the supreme council meeting on April 25 as he believed that the party needs a new mandate from members in preparation for the 15th general election.
"I take into account the views from other Umno leaders and the party grassroots who push for the party polls not to be postponed if the general election doesn't take place this year," Jalaluddin (above) told Sinar Harian.
The Jelebu MP is confident that the party polls will be held this year.
"Although the decision from the supreme council will be made collectively, I'm confident that the party polls will happen this year.
"We will try to endorse it as soon as possible," he said.
For the record, Umno polls should be held every three years.
The last one was on June 30, 2018, shortly after the party lost federal power for the first time. The current term of Umno leadership will end on June 30.
However, the party constitution also allows the supreme council to postpone the election for a period of not more than 18 months from the date the polls should have been held.
The Umno president had reminded the government that if it did not dissolve Parliament after the emergency order was lifted in August, Umno would withdraw its support from the government.
All 17 Umno ministers and deputy ministers had also pledged to remain with the Perikatan Nasional administration until August.
A postponement of the party election would see Zahid staying on as the Umno president beyond this three-year term.
Meanwhile, Utusan Malaysia reported that a group of Umno supreme council members intend to make it known to Zahid, who is facing graft charges, that they want him to quit as president.
“We are not a party that likes to bring down leaders but if there is a need for change we have our ways,” the report quoted an unnamed Umno supreme council member as saying.
Zahid has come under pressure over a purported audio recording showing him collaborating with PKR president Anwar Ibrahim, an opposition rival that is unpopular with Umno grassroots. Zahid had denied he was the person in the leaked recording.
The Umno supreme council meeting on Sunday is expected to discuss, among others, the party election and also Umno's ties with Bersatu and Perikatan Nasional (PN).
The party's annual general assembly had last month decided to sever ties with Bersatu and PN in the next general election but left it to Zahid to set a timeline.
The supreme council member acknowledged that even if Zahid were to step down, which he does not appear to be willing, several competing camps vying for his position may not be happy.
While Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan would be the natural successor, key leaders such as Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Hishammuddin Hussein may also be interested in the top post.
A party election may resolve the problem but there are also concerns it could split the party before the 15th general election. - Mkini
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