KUALA LUMPUR, July 14 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak today responded to Umno lawmaker Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz who had criticised his appointment as Barisan Nasional (BN) adviser.
Najib questioned Nazri’s commitment to stand up against Pakatan Harapan (PH) and gave several instances when the Padang Rengas MP failed to act in the interest of BN, Sinar Harian reported.
“Prior to this, Nazri had objected to the cooperation with PAS and instead urged Umno to sideline MCA and MIC and work with DAP instead.
“In the election (GE14), MCA also informed me that amongst the reasons their Chinese vote declined was due to Nazri’s overboard criticism against (tycoon) Robert Kuok that offended the Chinese community,” he said during a gathering with his supporters in Batu Kawan, Penang earlier today.
Najib said Nazri too can occupy the position of BN adviser but asked if the latter would be willing to harp on PH when the need arises.
“Nazri or whoever can play the role as BN adviser but is he willing to consistently criticise Harapan?” he was quoted as saying.
Najib further suggested that Umno’s partners in BN have not found Nazri to be a palatable candidate.
He pointed out that MCA and MIC had strongly objected to his previous appointment as BN secretary-general.
“We are all aware that previously, he was asked by MCA and MIC to let go of the position as BN secretary-general,” he added.
Earlier today, Nazri, together with Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin, criticised Najib’s appointment as BN adviser.
Nazri claimed that Najib had initially lobbied for the position of BN chairperson but was instead appointed as an adviser.
Nazri added that Najib was trying to make a comeback as prime minister despite his 42 charges of money laundering, criminal breach of trust and abuse of power.
Meanwhile Khairy urged party leaders to not use the party as a “shield” against court proceedings they are facing.
In reference to Najib, Khairy made the appeal as he said many Umno members are innocent of the alleged crimes.
On July 9, BN secretary-general Tengku Adnan Mansor announced that Najib had been appointed as the top adviser for BN after a meeting between party chiefs.