KUALA LUMPUR: Former Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Razak can “save” the party if he is released from prison, says Umno supreme council member Isham Jalil (pic).
Isham said Najib is still popular among the party grassroots and could raise the dwindling support for the party since the 15th General Election (GE15).
“The recent six-state polls also saw Umno losing support from almost 80% of its grassroots.
“In a political party, we cannot afford to lose our grassroots, and only he (Najib) can pull back their support.
“What happens if we lose all our grassroots in future general elections, especially the 16th General Election,” he said during the "Townhall for Justice - Keadilan Sebenarnya untuk Siapa" programme held here on Saturday (Sept 30).
Isham also called on Umno's top leadership not to be afraid of their own shadows if Najib is released.
“Do not worry, you will be overshadowed when Najib is released. But when he is released, we can restore the party and recover the economy,” he said.
Meanwhile, Senator Datuk Seri Ti Lian Ker said there is a need for more support to be given to Najib for him to obtain a Royal Pardon.
“So far, the people who sympathise with Najib are rational people, and we always think rationally.
“The respective parties did not go out and radicalise our supporters. This is why Najib is not getting the political momentum needed to support his pardon,” he said.
Najib is currently serving his 12-year prison sentence after the Federal Court affirmed his conviction and sentence in the SRC International Sdn Bhd graft case.
On Sept 2, last year, the former prime minister had applied for a Royal Pardon, claiming unfair treatment.