Umno Ready to Work with ‘Enemies’

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Umno is willing to cooperate with any party, including DAP, said its secretary-general, Annuar Musa, adding that the party cannot be rigid in new Malaysia.

  • Umno considers itself the custodian of the constitution
  • Can work with DAP if the latter agrees to meet Umno’s demands of protecting the rights of Malays
  • Reinventing Umno to become a moderate party with no room for chauvinism, racism, extremism
  • Looking at being back in power in two years

“We want to keep our options open. Barisan Nasional’s (BN) old formula of alliance is now outdated.

“We need to keep our options open and be willing to be very pragmatic. We want to engage with as many political parties and other organisations as possible, including the four political parties in government,” he told The Malaysian Insight.

Annuar was referring to the Pakatan Harapan coalition, which comprises PKR, DAP, Amanah and Bersatu.

He said nothing is impossible in politics, adding that Umno is not just looking at cooperation with PAS but if given the opportunity, it will work with Bersatu, PKR and even DAP.

The former Mara chairman said collaboration with DAP will be possible if the party agrees to meet Umno’s demands of protecting the rights of Malays, which are enshrined in the federal constitution.

“We consider ourselves as the custodians of the constitution. The things that appear in the constitution are part and parcel of our struggle. If DAP can agree to that, we can work with DAP,” Annuar said.

Umno will reinvent itself to become a party more suited for the 21st century, the Ketereh lawmaker said.

“There will be no room for chauvinism, no room for racism. No room for extremism. Everything must be a concept of moderation and sharing. That is what is Umno is all about,” Annuar said.

If all goes well, Umno will be back in power in the next two years, the former minister said.

This, he said, was based on PH’s performance so far, which makes him confident it will lose the government soon.

“We are not thinking about the GE (general election), we are thinking about taking over the government after mid-term.

“Five years is too far away. We are not thinking of GE15, thinking of taking it midway. (It is) very very possible,” Annuar said.

PAS and Umno had a working relationship during the recently held Sg Kandis by-election, where the Islamist party sat out to prevent a three-cornered fight with Pakatan Harapan.

However, PKR’s Mohd Zawawi Ahmad Mughni won the state seat by 15,427 votes while BN’s Lokman Noor Adam received 9,585 votes to give the former a 5,842-vote majority. – TMI