MUAR: Barisan Nasional will ensure that the coalition will wrestle the Pagoh parliamentary seat from the Opposition in the coming general election, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
The Prime Minister said although the seat now belongs to Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Pribumi), Barisan was confident of winning the seat.
"Look at the crowd turnout (Felda settlers) in today's event and it shows that they are still behind Umno, Barisan and the Government," he said.
Najib said this in his speech during an event with Pagoh community at Felda Maokil near here on Friday (Feb 9) which was attended by some 5,000 people.
Also present at the event were Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Khaled Nordin, Pagoh Umno division acting chief Ismail Mohamed who is also the State Agriculture, Agro-based Industry, Entrepreneurs and Cooperative committee chairman, and Felda chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Abdul Samad.
He said leaders come and go but Umno and Barisan would remain, adding that Malaysians must look at the contributions made by Barisan instead of their leaders.
"I will not stand here today as the country's Prime Minister if I didn't get solid backing from some 3.5 million Umno members," said Najib.
He also took a swipe at former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who is now Pribumi chairman.
"He (Dr Mahathir) should remember that he was the country's prime minister for 22 years because all of Umno members were behind him," added Najib.
He said Malays still remained loyal to Umno and it was proven when Umno founder Datuk Onn Jaafar left the party due to misunderstanding with members.
"When Datuk Onn left Umno and set up a new party, Umno members remained loyal to Umno," said Najib.
He, however, said Onn did not destroy the party.
He said Dr Mahathir and Pribumi president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is Pagoh MP, were going all out to destroy Umno in cohorts with DAP.
At the event, some 721 Felda Maokil settlers received their land titles after toiling the land for about 30 years.