KUALA KANGSAR: Umno and other Barisan Nasional component parties have been asked to triple their efforts to regain the support of the Chinese, Indians and other ethnic groups for the general election.
Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi reminded party leaders that support from the Malays alone would not be enough to win the elections.
“We have to work really hard to win the confidence of the non-Malays,” he said after opening the Kuala Kangsar Umno division meeting here yesterday.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Defence Minister, said the analysis of the last general election clearly showed eroding support for Barisan from the Chinese and Indians.
“Therefore, this time around Umno is enhancing its machinery to gain grassroots support from all communities. We are helping our friends from other component parties in Barisan there was a time when Umno lacked support and those from the other parties gave us the backing we needed,” he added.
Another Umno vice-president, Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal said the party never practised extremism in any form to protect its interests.
“We do not use our authority to make fatwa (edicts) on what people can or cannot do,” he said when opening the Ipoh Timur Umno division meeting, adding that the party also did not encourage its members to blindly follow its leaders.
Shafie, who is Rural and Regional Development Minister, said Barisan was committed to delivering all promises made because it was accountable to the rakyat.
“People who voted for Barisan expect it to keep its promises. And we are sincere in developing the country,” he said.