UMNO AGM | Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan’s press conference today was met with surprise followed by laughter when he was asked about the party’s prime ministerial candidate in the next general election.
The question is a contentious issue for Umno as, by convention, Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is the prime ministerial candidate but he is facing graft charges.
When asked who is Umno’s prime ministerial candidate, Mohamad replied: “You’re speaking to him right now,” he said at the Putrajaya World Trade Centre (PWTC) in Kuala Lumpur.
There was a moment of silence followed by a burst of laughter.
Mohamad then stressed that he was only joking.
“I like to joke,” said Mohamad, who is also the Rantau assemblyperson.
The press conference was held after Mohamad officiated at the opening of the annual general assembly for the party’s wings.
Also present was Umno secretary-general Ahmad Maslan.
The Umno president has historically always become prime minister if Umno formed the federal government.
Umno was defeated in the 14th general election, prompting Najib Abdul Razak to resign as party president in 2018.
Zahid was elected as his replacement but some within the party want him to stay on the sidelines until after his court cases are resolved.
During his speech to Umno delegates, Mohamad said Umno was prepared to negotiate with any who can accept Umno’s terms for the next general election.
He said regardless of the arrangements, Umno must be the dominant force.
On the prime ministerial candidate, he said it will be determined by the party but stressed that he or she must come from Umno.