Umno supreme council to discuss DPM candidate, terms to support PN tonight

Haspaizi Zain
·2-min read
Umno supreme council to discuss DPM candidate, terms to support PN tonight
Umno supreme council to discuss DPM candidate, terms to support PN tonight

The Umno supreme council will convene for the second time this week tonight to set out their terms of cooperation with Perikatan Nasional.

They will also be discussing who among them, will be their candidate for deputy prime minister.

According to Umno sources, three names are being considered, namely party deputy president Mohamad Hasan, vice-president cum Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Sembrong division chief cum Foreign Affairs Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.

"The Umno leadership will meet to determine the name that will be submitted, as well as terms that will be presented to Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin," a source told Malaysiakini.

Muhyiddin is reportedly waiting for Umno to name their choice to be his deputy.

However, the prime minister reportedly does not want this post to be given to Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is still facing corruption charges in court.

One source said that Hishammuddin, who does not hold a central post in Umno, is also an unlikely pick.

"Hishammuddin's chances to be nominated are slim, because this may not sit well with many Umno leaders," the source claimed.

The Sembrong MP is viewed by rivals in the party as being responsible for mass defections from Umno to splinter party Bersatu following the 2018 general election.

In a Facebook post today, Hishammuddin (above) denied making any effort to position himself to become deputy prime minister.

"I believe the most important thing that is the government's and Umno's focus be on the coming Parliament meeting, Budget 2021, and managing the Covid-19 crisis - not positions," he said.

Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan is not an MP and would therefore have to be sworn in as a senator if he is to become deputy prime minister.

Appointing an Umno leader as deputy prime minister is one of the demands the party wants to be met in exchange for its continued support for PN.

Umno's ties with Bersatu - which leads PN - began to sour after the latter muscled the former out of the Sabah chief minister position in last month's state election.

The Malay-party felt that it has been making too many concessions to Bersatu, with the latter not reciprocating.

Umno had also considered pulling out support its for the PN, but ultimately decided to continue backing the coalition on condition that Umno gets more respect and political consensus.