Is Umno still with Perikatan? Minister Hishammuddin says about to find out

Syed Jaymal Zahiid
·2-min read
Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein arrives for a Barisan Nasional meeting at the Putra World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur October 26, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein arrives for a Barisan Nasional meeting at the Putra World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur October 26, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — Umno’s support for the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) was currently unknown, Barisan Nasional (BN) treasurer-general Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said upon arriving for a hastily convened meeting today.

The foreign affairs minister who arrived at the Putra World Trade Centre here after a special Cabinet meeting this morning said this was among matters that would be discussed with BN’s federal lawmakers.

When pressed to say if his party still stood with Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s ruling coalition, Hishammuddin refused to commit.

“I don’t know. We have to wait for Umno’s meeting,” he told reporters gathered outside the meeting’s venue.

On whether Muhyiddin should continue on as the PM, Hishammuddin said this would also be discussed.

The minister also said it was “a bit unclear” if Muhyiddin has resigned, when the former was asked to comment about such rumours.

The BN central leadership including top Umno members have gathered for a closed-door meeting at the PWTC here, just hours after the special Cabinet meeting this morning.

It is understood that today’s meeting was scheduled even before the events that unfolded over the last three days, ostensibly to deliberate on the upcoming Parliament proceeding slated for November 2.

Muhyiddin had an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on Friday to “propose” a proclamation of emergency.

But the Istana Negara subsequently rejected the idea, with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong was of the view that the current government are effectively handling the Covid-19 pandemic and trust the government’s capability.

The rejection has since furled rumours of yet another shake up of the current political configuration, among them being BN leaders withdrawing support for Muhyiddin and pushing for election.

BN leaders who are not part of the Muhyiddin Cabinet had arrived much earlier, among them former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and former Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Khaled Nordin.

Bar Hishammuddin, none of the leaders spoke to the press as they rushed through the reporters and photographers who have assembled at the Menara Tun Hussein Onn as early as 10am.

Security at the PWTC was also tight, with no media personnel or even political aides allowed to be near the meeting room on the 38th floor.

It is unclear if a press conference will be held later today although the coalition is expected to issue a statement once the meeting is concluded.

* A previous version of this story contained an error which has since been corrected.

Related Articles PH kecewa BN terus sokong Muhyiddin, kata Annuar Percaya kepimpinan Muhyiddin, PAS kekal bersama PN PAS goes all-in with Muhyiddin, bids to rally allies against Pakatan