Umno purge: Free agent KJ says taking time to consider political future

KUALA LUMPUR: Khairy Jamaluddin, who was sacked from Umno on Friday (Jan 27) still has aspirations of becoming prime minister one day.

The former Umno Youth chief, who was ousted after 23 years with the party, said he would like to have the privilege of leading the country some day.

ALSO READ: Umno purge: No point in appealing my sacking, says Khairy

"Right now, I am not sure how that will happen but I know being a politician is not a linear path.

"There are many paths people go down before they reach there and I do still want to lead the country one day.

"How I will get there I do not know but I want to ensure the decisions I make in the next few months are based on a vision of a country I am happy and comfortable with," he said when speaking to business radio station BFM on its The Breakfast Grille segment on Monday (Jan 30) morning.

ALSO READ: ‘Sacking and suspension valid under Umno constitution’

He was responding to a question posed by its host Shazana Mokhtar, who asked if his ambition to be prime minister was still intact after being sacked from Umno.

On his future in politics, Khairy said he would take his time contemplating it but there have been a slew of offers coming in since he failed to win the Sungai Buloh parliamentary seat in the 15th General Election and now after being expelled from Umno.

"I will decide and announce it in due course.

"I am a huge football fan and I am like a free transfer looking for a club and scanning my options.

ALSO READ: Party did not follow due process, says Ismail Sabri

"It is not a decision I will make lightly and be flippant about as politics is a serious business.

"I still want to be involved in politics, but whether and when I want to be back in the front line of politics, I am unsure.

"State elections (in six states) that will need to take place in the next six months is an option or I can give it a miss and focus on business opportunities as well.

"It was 23 years of my life through thick and thin with the party (Umno).

ALSO READ: Sacking decision a hot topic of debate

"It is difficult for me to move on as far as my own heart is concerned as I did not leave, I was thrown out, sacked from the party,

"I need to adjust to that reality and if I choose another vehicle, I have to do so carefully," he said.

When asked on the criteria he has for joining a political party, he said it has to be something that is aligned with his own vision for the country.

"One that is inclusive, based on good governance and is progressive.

ALSO READ: No invitation yet for sacked Umno leaders to join Pakatan, says Anwar

"It has to be a comfortable fit and the chemistry has to be there.

"Joining a new political party will be awkward at first as presumably you would have been at loggerheads at some point with opposing parties, but that is what politics is about.

"That is something I am up for, winning people over.

"It must however align with my vision and not just be an opportunistic decision," he said.

ALSO READ: Sembrong Umno div stands by their chief, criticises Hisham's suspension

When asked about his chummy relationship with PKR deputy president Rafizi Ramli and PKR vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar, Khairy said he will listen to everyone who wants to meet with him.

"I am in no rush to decide, I will be open with whoever wants to meet with me," he said.

ALSO READ: Former Umno leaders return fire - Khairy and Noh say due process not followed in sacking decision

When asked if he saw himself returning to Umno at some point, Khairy said he fears the gradual decline of Umno may have reached the point of no return.

"If I do contemplate returning to Umno, it has to be different from the Umno of today.

"The brand and leadership has deteriorated and I am not sure it will be able to resuscitate itself," he said.

ALSO READ: Umno needs a political compass

On Friday (Jan 27), Umno sacked Khairy and Umno supreme council member Tan Sri Noh Omar.

Former Umno vice-president and Sembrong MP Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, meanwhile, was suspended for six years alongside former Umno information chief Shahril Hamdan, former Umno Youth exco member Datuk Dr Fathul Bari Mat Jahya, former Johor state exco member and Tebrau Umno chief Datuk Maulizan Bujang and former Jempol MP Datuk Seri Mohd Salim Mohd Shariff.

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