Reports by Mazwin Nik Anis , Rahimy Rahim , Fatimah Zainal and Liew Jia Xian.
KUALA LUMPUR: Calls to rebuild Umno, condemning those who abandoned the ship and possible new political cooperation took centre stage in the maiden speech by heads of the three wings.
In the first general assembly after the May 9 polls, the Youth, Wanita and Puteri movements also called on their members to remain loyal and steadfast towards the party’s struggles and work hard to win back the hearts and minds of the people in the next general election.
Youth chief Datuk Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki said Umno leaders should not betray the trust of the people by jumping ship.
“We would like to remind certain quarters who plan to leave the party to have some dignity.
“If the people’s trust in us is betrayed, the party will be rejected forever,” he said in his address to the delegates.
In overhauling the party, the Wanita wing called for an amendment to the party’s constitution to prevent elected representatives, who won under the Umno and Barisan Nasional ticket, from keeping their seats should they leave the party.
“This may not be against the law but the act of party hopping is against civil contract. This must stop if we want voters to continue to have trust in us,” said Wanita chief Datuk Dr Noraini Ahmad.
Rebuilding Umno also means ridding the party of “warlords”, an issue which was raised by both Dr Noraini and Puteri chief Datuk Zahida Zarik Khan.
Zahida said the practice had stayed for far too long in Umno, calling on the leadership to stop such a culture.
She said party president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi must consider drastic measures, including legal action against turncoat elected representatives.
“We saw those who were with us reaping as much as they possibly could. We saw those who gained positions but sold them to the enemy. Sorry to say, they are no more than political prostitutes with no dignity.
“Puteri Umno is demanding that the president take stern action against those who broke away from the party,” she said.
The issue of a new political cooperation was raised by Wanita, saying that this would help to rejuvenate Barisan.
Dr Noraini said Umno should look for “new orientation” in order to move forward after losing power in the GE14.
On cooperation with PAS, both Youth and Wanita chiefs raised the issue with Dr Asyraf, saying that the intention of an Umno-PAS cooperation was to unite the Malays and for the betterment of the Ummah.
“I have to admit it will not be easy to go this way but both sides can still maintain their ideologies, orientations and approaches without affecting our ideals,” he said.
Dr Noraini said the Umno-PAS cooperation was to create “check and balance” to strengthen the opposition bloc.
This was the first time that representatives from PAS attended the wings meeting.
The PAS delegation was led by its youth chief Muhammad Khalil Abdul Hadi, its Muslimat by Nuridah Mohd Salleh and young women’s wing Ammerah chief Husna Hashim.
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