Umno's Shahril Hamdan says BN should be Opposition, hard to justify losing party made part of govt

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 20 — Former Umno information chief Shahril Hamdan today said that his coalition Barisan Nasional (BN) should form the Opposition since it had clearly lost in the 15th general elections (GE15).

There may not be one clear winner but it is clear we lost, he said in a statement this evening.

"It is hard to rationalise to the people how a losing party can be part of the government when other parties which have managed to get 70 or 80 seats had to form the pposition,” he said.

He added that things would have been different if BN had formed alliances prior to GE15 but since it did not, it has no "moral standing” to comprise the government.

"This time, there is no pandemic or division among winning parties that will allow us to swoop in to become the saviour,” he said.

He urged BN members to focus on reforming the coalition’s agenda, which reflects the coalition in turn so that it can rise again from its defeat.

"Furthermore, we are at 'war’ with Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Perikatan Nasional (PN) not for two weeks. But for a long time and genuinely,” he said, adding that BN must differentiate itself from rival coalitions by having ‘"class".

He also said that attention must be given to rebuilding the party but BN must continue to do things the way it has always done.

Earlier today, Shahril announced his resignation as Umno’s information chief citing collective responsibility and urged party president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to also honourably step down following BN’s disastrous performance in GE15.

He also agreed with Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi’s statement this morning, calling for Ahmad Zahid's resignation.

Shahril, who represented BN, also lost the contest for the Alor Gajah parliamentary constituency to PH’s Adly Zahari in a four-cornered contest.

He narrowly lost after garnering 27,288 votes compared to Adly who polled 28,178 votes for a wafer-thin majority of 890 votes.