GEORGE TOWN: Umno's decision not to cooperate with Perikatan Nasional in the next general election is their choice, says Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee (pic).
He said nothing can be done by Bersatu to influence the decision.
It is Umno's right, he said, to decide on its political direction in facing the coming GE15.
"For Bersatu, it will continue to be our priority to strengthen the country's economy and address the Covid-19 pandemic by prioritising the welfare of the people as a whole," he said in a statement on Monday (March 29).
On Sunday (March 28), Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi announced during the party's general assembly that its decision not to cooperate with Bersatu was final.
Ronald said the Sabah state polls in September last year had proven that the people were mature enough to assess a party's capability to promise deals and offers.
He said in Sabah, traditions in the strengths of seats are no longer the only factor to consider by the people when assessing the coalition's parties to be appointed as government.
"Political tolerance among parties in the Gabungan Rakyat Sabah coalition, which succeeded in defeating Parti Warisan Sabah, can be used as lesson by all.
"In fact, Umno's political enemy is not Bersatu, but Pakatan Harapan," he added.
In line with Bersatu's stand in the Perikatan government led by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Ronald advised party members to continue working hard and fulfil the needs of the people by ensuring that government programmes such as Prihatin Economic Stimulus Package (Prihatin), National Economic Revival Plan (Penjana), Pakej Bantuan Perlindungan Ekonomi dan Rakyat Malaysia (Permai), and Program Strategik Memperkasa Rakyat dan Ekonomi (Pemerkasa) benefit them.
"The rakyat are tired of politics and want a government that will assist them amid the Covid-19 pandemic," he said, adding that efforts to topple the Perikatatan government is not the people's priority now.