SIGNS are rife the ousting of Umno president Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has begun, said analysts.
They said this is evident from the hard-hitting press conference held by former party secretary-general Annuar Musa, the circulation of an e-book against Zahid and the open call by a division leader for the president’s resignation.
“This is no coincidence as two weeks earlier Annuar had openly attacked Zahid,” said Ilham Centre director Hisommudin Bakar.
Paya Besar Umno’s call for Zahid to resign on Friday, said the pollster, was merely a follow-up from what Annuar started.
“This is a planned counter narrative to Zahid’s plan to break off ties with Bersatu and withdraw the party from the Perikatan Nasional government.
“This also confirms the internal clash in Umno really exists. And it’s something that Zahid has failed to handle,” said Hisommudin.
Hisommudin was commenting on Paya Besar Umno division chief Ahmad Tajuddin Sulaiman’s open call for Zahid to quit as president.
The Boustead director claimed Zahid had failed to lead the party in a clear direction, which has affected the party’s unity.
Hisommudin said these attacks would intensify as Umno is due to hold its party elections this year.
He said Umno has to accept that the party was not what it used to be and that it can no longer monopolise Malay support.
“The statement also shows the dissatisfaction among Umno members for Ahmad Zahid’s inability to set a proper direction for the party ahead of the 15th general election,” said the former Universiti Malaya graduate.
Universiti Malaya’s Prof Dr Awang Azman Amang Pawi meanwhile said that although many divisions in Umno have voted in favour of severing ties with Bersatu, there’s a lot of uneasiness with this.
“Particularly, by those who have been rewarded with positions under the PN government.
“Such quarters are pressuring Zahid to withdraw as their own positions in the cabinet and government-linked companies will be lost if Umno breaks off ties with Perikatan,” said Awang Azman.
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT