JOHOR BARU: Former Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein says the party should explain to its members in Port Dickson why it chose to opt out of the parliamentary by-election.
He said he personally disagreed with the decision to boycott the polls, but would abide by it.
“The party leadership must go down and tell our members in the constituency what to do when the by-election comes.
“Do they vote for the opposition or not vote at all?
“If they vote for the opposition, then they risk disciplinary action,” the Sembrong MP said, adding that such circumstances arose when the party made decisions that were “out of the ordinary”.
Addressing Tebrau Umno members here on Sunday, Hishammuddin said: “I am not happy with everything done in Umno and I will continue to voice my concerns.”
He also renewed his call for the party leadership to provide a clear direction to members.
He said although Umno was not perfect, “it has its strengths”.
At this point in time, he added, he had no plans to join another party.
Hishammuddin, who did not contest any post in the recent Umno polls, reiterated that he had met Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to speak about the future of the Malays and issues affecting them.
“We do not need to play politics on this matter, as I am looking at ways to cooperate for the good of the community.
“However, all sorts of rumours started when Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed and Datuk Seri Anifah Aman quit at about the same time,” he said.
Asked about him not holding any senior post in the party aside from being the Sembrong Umno division chief, Hishammuddin said he was playing a part in helping to improve Johor Umno’s relations with the party’s top leadership.
“I see a lot more people now and they seek my advice without fear or favour.
“I think they are more forthcoming knowing that I do not hold any high post in the party,” he said, adding that the important thing was to be sincere and trustworthy.
Johor Umno treasurer Datuk Md Jais Sarday said the party had made a mistake by boycotting the by-election.
He said that by sitting out, Barisan had lowered its credibility as an effective opposition.