17 August 2018

KJ should go straight for Umno president's post, says Syed Saddiq

KJ should go straight for Umno president's post, says Syed Saddiq
PETALING JAYA: Umno Youth Chief Khairy Jamaluddin should either run for the party’s presidency or forget about contesting altogether, Bersatu Youth Chief Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman said.

The Muar Member of Parliament said Khairy should take the responsibility for failing to attract youths to vote for Umno during the May 9 polls and thus, the former Cabinet minister should start transforming the party from the top.

According to Syed Saddiq, if Khairy offered himself to be the party president, it would be the best way to re-shape Umno’s future so that it would be able to become a strong opposition.

“My advice for KJ (Khairy) is to contest for the president’s post or don’t contest at all like (Puteri Umno chief) Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin.

“This is to take responsibility for Barisan Nasional’s failure to gain youth support and to send a clear message that he (Khairy) can regain their support and thus shape Umno’s future,” he said in an interview with the New Straits Times Press at Bersatu headquarters here today.

Earlier this month, Khairy who is also the Rembau MP announced that he would be contesting for one of the three Umno vice-presidents’ posts which are currently being held by Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.

Recently, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was of the opinion that Khairy would be the best candidate to steer Umno following the party’s devastating loss in the 14th General Election (GE14).

However, Khairy later said he believed that Dr Mahathir was simply being playful when the latter made the suggestion, to which Syed Saddiq disagreed.

“When Dr Mahathir said KJ should contest for the presidency, KJ said it was sarcasm. But I believe it was not, because in Bersatu, Dr Mahathir has always been a person who wants the youths to be at the forefront.

“When Dr Mahathir said that, I believe it was because he wanted to see new changes within Umno and for it to become a strong opposition. If (Khairy) still wants to play it safe and just contest for the vice-president’s post, then he can’t do much,” he said.

The 25-year-old leader further said that if Khairy refused to break Umno’s old structure, the party and its young members would go nowhere.

When asked for his thoughts on the possibility of Umno veteran Tengku Razaleigh Ibrahim running as president, Saddiq disagreed with that proposal.

“It is very interesting but Tengku Razaleigh as Umno president would not be able to capture the youth’s imagination like KJ or other young leaders.

“I think making Tengku Razaleigh as the president would backfire,” he added.

At the end of last month, Umno Mak Chili branch proposed for ex-finance minister Tengku Razaleigh to be made party president. However, the Gua Musang MP said he has yet to make a decision on this.


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