I READ and comprehended our President’s latest statement on the party’s approach to various decisions made by the government under the leadership of Prime Minister YAB Dato ‘Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
I believe Umno’s stance is the best and right at this time even though it seems very alien to the Malaysian political practice that we have known for so long.
To be honest, Umno has never imagined a situation where its top leaders lead the party but do not control the government, and vice versa. This is what happening now. The ideal era where Umno leaders not only lead the party but also control the government, is over.
What is the meaning of all this? This means that Umno and the government are two entities with their own freedom, stance and direction. Sometimes it will meet in its stance and direction, sometimes it will separate and flow with its own direction.
Under such circumstances, we can expect that Umno will support the government as long as the government’s stand upholds the public interest and good and does not conflict with the party’s aspirations.
But there are also circumstances and things that will see Umno take a different stance and it is up to the Prime Minister to carry out his responsibility to manage the government. There are Umno policies and stances that the Prime Minister cannot implement and Umno understands them.
But the matter of the party and the affairs of the party, that is the responsibility of the President and the party leadership and no one should interfere in it. In this regard, the President made an assertion of three tasks that Umno will prioritise.
First, the President and the Supreme Council will manage the party best and carry out all duties as required.
Second, it will set the party’s stance on various issues and the government is free to accept it or not. Third, the party will be a principled check and balance platform and use the various channels available to assist the government.
To overcome the less-than-ideal situation where the government is not party-dominated, the President enlightened that the best way is to hold general elections.
According to the President’s statement, it must be held as soon as Malaysia enters the endemic phase and when the vaccination rate has reached the desirable and reasonable conditions to conduct general elections safely. In this regard, more than 80 countries have implemented the GE during the pandemic and Malaysia cannot be an exception.
To face the election, all preparations are the responsibility of the party and only at the discretion of the party. The determination of seats, manifestos, selection of candidates etc. is a party affair and there should be no interference.
Clearly, the President has committed that the party will use all the remaining time to prepare for the GE. It will try to win in all its traditional seats.
The Umno seats contested in GE-14 will continue to be Umno’s in GE-15. This is an obvious thing. There is no compromise on the matter.
Hopefully the awkward situation of the government not controlled by the party will end soon through the GE. I believe the country desperately needs political stability above all else.
DATUK SERI HJ. MOHAMED KHALED NORDIN