Umno’s top leadership may have been empowered to decide when to leave the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government, but ultimately the decision lies with the individual MPs, said Arau MP Shahidan Kassim.
“The Umno supreme council has decided (to pull out of the government) but I don’t know when (that will happen).
“But after the supreme council make the decision (on when to pull out), it is the MPs who will decide whether to dissolve parliament or not.
“Finally, it is up to the MPs,” Shahidan said in a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.
Last weekend, the Umno general assembly empowered party president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and the supreme council to decide on an exit date from the PN government.
Zahid had said Umno will withdraw if Bersatu decides not to call for a general election until the current Parliament’s term ends in 2023.
He also said that BN has decided to go into the 15th general election on its own.
Shahidan today said when the PN government was formed in March 2020, it was the MPs who decided to come together to form a new administration.
“It wasn’t Umno who toppled the Pakatan Harapan (government) but the MPs. The party didn’t know about it.
“The party only came into the picture when it came time to appoint the cabinet,” said the Umno Perlis chairperson.
Since the party has already decided to eventually terminate its cooperation with Bersatu, Shahidan said the MPs must also make their own stand now.
Shahidan also denied that he was a “broker” working to pull Umno lawmakers to support the PN government.
“When I’m friendly (with Bersatu), I am accused of being an agent and a ‘broker’. I don’t have to be a broker. I am better than those broker agents at the Umno general assembly.
“Umno agreed to ‘divorce’ (from Bersatu) when it comes to the election, but right now we are still ‘married’ so I will continue to be friendly with them.
“I’m sure there are those who see me as the enemy,” he said.
Shahidan has also urged for the party election to go on in line with the party constitution, instead of being postponed.
Previously, the Umno supreme council had decided to postpone the party election for 18 months.
“The party constitution said we have to have party election in June, but the supreme council can ask to postpone for 18 months.
“For me, it is better for the election to be conducted in accordance with the constitution. I do not agree that it is early,” he said.
Yesterday, Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin said there is only one way to resolve the internal fighting within Umno and that is through a party election this year.
Umno’s election, he said, must take place on schedule before the 15th general election is held.
“There is only one way to solve the internal problems of Umno. Hold the party election immediately, do not postpone it until after the GE.
“We should have the election this year,” said the science, technology and innovation minister. – Malaysiakini