PETALING JAYA: Umno supreme council member and Rim state assemblywoman Datuk Khaidirah Abu Zahar (pic) has confirmed that she will be contesting the Puteri Umno chief post in the party polls.
The Deputy Speaker of the Melaka State Assembly stated this yesterday following the Umno Supreme Council meeting at the World Trade Center.
Khaidirah, also known as Dira, said the time had come for her to take a step up to be among the top leaders of the party, just as she herself began her Umno career in Puteri.
The incumbent Puteri Umno chief is Datuk Zahida Zarik Khan.
Dira said Puteri had much potential as an established wing and that many young female leaders had emerged from this wing since its founding 21 years ago.
“My passion is for the women’s empowerment agenda,” she said.
“I understand how Puteri works and its culture, having served as a Puteri Umno Malaysia exco and as the Jasin Puteri chief.
“Additionally, as a member of the Umno Supreme Council, I am able to work the dynamics of Umno at the federal level and its nationwide network.
“This is the right time for me to make use of my experiences to steer Puteri in its key position,” said Dira.
She also said she believed that many “hidden gems” in Puteri would shine in the party polls.
“I believe in the concepts of openness, friendship, and teamwork. I welcome all Puteri who share my dream of seeing Puteri improve to get on board with me,” Dira added.
She pointed out that her loyalty to the party, professional background and legal education have led her to where she was now in the party.
Dira said she believed she would be able to highlight the issues of young women, education, family and children should she be elected as she had a good social network.
Nurul Hazwani Haslan, Fadwah Anuwar and Dr Masliha Harun, who are all incumbent Puteri Umno office bearers, are among those speculated to be vying for the Puteri Umno top post.
Umno is in the midst of its internal elections for the 191 divisions and 22,000 branches, including the divisions that were suspended.
The party’s new office bearers will be elected from Feb 1 to March 18, but the top two positions of president and deputy president will not be contested this time around.
In May last year, Umno amended its constitution to allow party polls to be held within six months after the conclusion of the 15th General Election.
Umno had postponed its party elections for 18 months after the 2018/2021 term ended on June 30, 2021, which meant party polls for the 2021/2023 term should have been held before Dec 30 last year. However, the polls were postponed.