Monday, April 07, 2008

Will Muhyiddin Challenge Pak Lah?

Stung by the stunning losses (four states and the ruling coalition's two-thirds majority in parliament) in the recent elections, Umno is looking for ways to rejuvenate the party.

But who will be the one to attempt the final push?

One man has already started to stir the pot - senior Umno leader Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah has said he wants an open election for the top post.

And there is another man who may be a contender - International Trade and Industry Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin. So far it looks like he has been hedging his bets.

Last Sunday, Mr Muhyiddin, who is also Umno's senior vice-president, supported calls for the divisional quota to be scrapped. Under this provision, a potential party presidential candidate must secure at least 30 per cent of nominations from all the 58 party divisions. This makes it difficult to secure a nomination.

At the same time, he has told the media that speculation that Mr Abdullah would step down as prime minister was irresponsible.

Former prime minister Mahathir Mohammad has named Mr Muhyiddin as a potential candidate for the Umno presidency. There is growing speculation in Malaysia that he will be one of the candidates for the top job if the quota system is scrapped.

SMSes have been flying around in Kuala Lumpur, saying he will be teaming up with Mr Razaleigh. Mr Muhyiddin, however, dismissed these as an April Fool's joke. 'Whatever it is, it doesn't come from me and the words are not from me. Maybe some mischievous people want to do something,' he told reporters in KL on Thursday.

Most analysts think Mr Muhyiddin will not contest the top job. They think it will be Mr Razaleigh who will challenge Prime Minister Abdullah.

Dr Ooi Kee Beng, Fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore, told The New Paper on Sunday: 'Tan Sri Muhyiddin is very much an Abdullah man, so it is hard to interpret his move as a challenge to the prime minister.

'The situation is such that Mr Abdullah cannot possibly avoid a challenge from within, most probably from Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, and perhaps others as well. 'Mr Abdullah's chances are far from dismal against this Umno veteran who had once left the party. 'What an open contest for the party presidency will mean is that all posts, including the deputy presidency, will be up for grabs. This might be what Mr Muhyiddin might be hoping to take advantage of.'

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Associate Professor Mohammad Agus Yusoff agrees. He said: 'I don't think Mr Muhyuddin will contest as a candidate against Pak Lah. He is only conveying the people's message that the quota system should go and there should be an open contest.'

Prof Yusoff is of the view that it will be a contest with Mr Razaleigh. He sees Mr Muhyiddin coming in as deputy prime minister. However, if one is to read carefully the statements that Mr Muhyiddin has been making of late, it is clear he is harbouring ambitions for the top job.


In the event of a close fight, Mr Muhyiddin might emerge as a compromise candidate. Mr Muhyiddin is said to have a solid grassroots network. He also belongs to the old guard of the party.

He has a strong support base which he has built up since his days as Mentri Besar of Johor from 1986 to 1995. He continues to maintain this support base and many see his credibility and background as his strength.

On Thursday when he was asked by the media whether he will be aiming for a higher position in the polls, his answer was: 'I will contest but I didn't say what I will contest for. 'I want to see what I can do for the party. That is more important. I am considering how to '... What is the point of being president when the party is destroyed and people don't respect us.' (Patrick Jonas, The Electric New Paper, Singapore)

***** So what would be the consequences of a Muhyiddin premiership for the people? After all he wants to '
save Umno, the Malays, Islam and the country'!

In terms of corruption he ranks right up there at the top with the other hungry vultures of Umno. He was specifically eased out of the MB's office in Johor due to serious cases of corruption including some dubious multi-million ringgit land deals. Can such a man be trusted with the power and privilege that comes with being prime minister?

But then again who among the serious contenders in that graft-ridden party is clean? None, I'm afraid. Muhyiddin will not
save Umno, the Malays, Islam or the country. He will only fabulously enrich himself and his own set of cronies. Such is the level of propriety and honesty in Umno today.

If this country is to truly progress and prosper it has to boldly dismantle the instruments which has lead to widespread corruption, including and especially the main sponsor of the unlimited avarice, Umno.

Pakatan Rakyat shows early promise of being the trusted entity to jettison Umno into oblivion, remedy the sorry state of affairs confronting us today and safely put us back on track. Will they be up to the arduous task? For sure Muhyiddin isn't.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Anwar clean? And close confidant, Azmin?

12:15 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Khairul H. said...

Yes. And yes. Especially when compared to the UMNO so-called big shots.

12:38 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

whatever circus they're playing with themselves are just going o push them even lower...not unless they want to learn and start anew...

by the way, hope to see this good blog have a change of skin.

you might want to consider selections at Our Blogger Templates.

2:43 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous SM said...

Muhyiddin will not challenge Pak Lah as he is Pak Lah's man. However, he may challenge Najib (!). That way Pak Lah gets rid of Najib (you can see the "cracks" in their relationship alreaday, despite all the usual propaganda) & put his man in! Or maybe Muhammad x2 may challenge Najib (he seems to be "stuck" to Pak Lah's ass everywhere Pak Lah goes).
Seems that the only likely candidate to challenge Pak Lah is Ku Li.

3:43 PM GMT+8  
Blogger DIASPORA said...

The whole lot from the top to the bottom are steeped in corruption and ill gotten wealth and properties both in this country and overseas. That seems to be the perception of most Malaysians about UMNO and its leadership and the cronies in UMNO, MCA and MIC who cringe around without any semblance of shame for the 'crumbs' they cringe for and then outwardly exhibit a show of arrogance.

There is no way that UMNO can be saved as it stands today. The Whole lot including the kris waver and the SoL should go and a proper cleansing must take place with entirely fresh blood untainted by any stain being brought in to bring UMNO back to its premier position - if that is possible.

The Old Guard is not going to go away easily after having enjoyed the perks both honest and devious and corrupt. They reek of corruption that you can nearly smell it when they walk past you. This of course also has bled down to cronies in the Civil Service and the Armed services.

Until all of them get out of the arrogant ways - the BR is going to have a hard time straightening them up.

6:56 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Warisan Kini said...

Salam perkenalan.

Isu2 panas dan bernas dari pelbagai blog.

5:25 AM GMT+8  

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