KUALA LUMPUR, March 28 — Umno must reclaim its pole position in Malaysian politics, its deputy president said in an interview with Sinar Harian published today.
Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, popularly known among members as Tok Mat, told the Malay daily that the party must capture at the very least 70 parliamentary seats in the next general election so it can be the dominant party again.
He added that when the party is dominant, it will never be alone as others will swarm to it like ants to honey.
“It’s not that Umno wants to contest 80 seats, that’s a mistake. We want to capture 70 to 80 seats. If more than 100, even better,” he said in the interview conducted yesterday, on the eve of Umno’s 75th annual general assembly.
He was clarifying reports that Umno was aiming to garner 80 out of 222 parliamentary seats, and observations that Umno will not be able to form government alone.
Mohamad also pointed out that Umno is part of the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition and would not be acting solo if it wins the general election.
“We have 14 parties in BN and Umno has never been alone.
“Just that we want Umno to be the dominant party that gets 80 to 85 seats. Whatever it is, we must win in the general election,” he was quoted saying.
He added if the party wins big in the next general election, others will flock to it easily.
“Likewise, we must also be strong like an elephant. If we are strong that will show we are dominant.”
Mohamad had also dismissed the perception that Umno will jeopardise its Malay Muslim voter base if it proceeds with its supreme council’s decision to sever ties with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) in the next general election.
Umno is currently working with Bersatu, formed by a splinter faction, in the federal government but is not formally a component of the ruling Perikatan Nasional coalition led by the latter party.
Mohamad said that championing Malay interests, which he called the interests of the ummah, is something Umno has been doing decades ago and needs no guidance from others.
“People accuse us for causing the disunity of ummah, but this is not true, and instead, Umno is leading the way in uniting the Malays.
“So that's why I say, don't try to teach us — don't try to teach us how to unite Malays,” he told Sinar Harian.
Related Articles Umno AGM shows its weaknesses rather than might PAS Youth chief says committed to Muslim unity despite Umno-Bersatu split Umno tolak kerjasama dengan PN, Pemuda PAS harap usaha bina perpaduan ummah tidak terkubur