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DAP concerned developments in Umno may affect state polls, undermine Malay support further

Publish date: Sun, 29 Jan 2023, 07:24 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: The DAP is concerned with Umno's move in sacking and suspending several of its leaders which it says will affect the people's support for the Unity Government.

This was especially so with the forthcoming state polls to be called this year, said DAP Deputy Chairman Dr P Ramasamy.

He said the situation was already exacerbated by Umno's poor performance in garnering support from the Malay voters which make up the bulk of its backing.

The Penang Deputy Chief Minister II as such called on Umno's leadership to immediately strengthen its position.

In addition, he also called on Umno to carry out mitigation plans to ensure that the effects of the party's latest actions can be minimised.

"This issue of dismissal (leaders and members) in Umno has been ongoing for a long time, until (it led to) the formation of PKR and Bersatu, most of whose leaders make up the Umno splinter parties.

"It is up to Umno. I do not want to interfere in their leadership affairs.

"However, the question is whether it (the action of sacking and suspending some Umno leaders) should be done now?" he told BH today.

Umno's Supreme Working Council (MKT) yesterday axed its former Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin and Selangor Umno Liaison Committee chief Tan Sri Noh Omar for violating party discipline and wrongdoing during the 15th General Election (GE15).

The MKT also suspended several of its members including Sembrong Member of Parliament, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein; Umno Youth Vice Chief Shahril Hamdan; Tebrau Umno Division Chief Datuk Maulizan Bujang and Jempol Umno Division Chief Datuk Seri Mohd Salim Sharif.

Ramasamy said fears that Umno's latest action may affect the percentage of Malay voter support for Pakatan Harapan (PH) which currently stands between 10 to 15 per cent.

In acknowledging that Malay voter support for PH had recorded a decline compared to Perikatan Nasional (PN), he said that it could further change according to the current political sentiment.

"It is true that the Umno leadership's action against some of their leaders has political implications and they need to act to reduce (the implications) by coming up with a mitigation plan.

"I see that Umno has been divided for a long time since 1998 and I hope they will soon strengthen the party," said the Penang state human capital development, education, science and technology exco.

On the action taken by the party against its leaders and members, Ramasamy said the party's leadership was seen as having no other option following the actions of some of its leaders who were seen as if they were trying to create an internal revolt.

However, he questioned Umno's move of only suspending Hishammuddin's membership. This as the Sembrong Member of Parliament was said to be one of the individuals who initiated the Sheraton Move and gathered support for Perikatan Nasional Chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin after GE15 in his bid to become the Prime Minister.

"Khairy only challenged the President, Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and stated various other things, including the use of phantom votes.

"However, Hishammuddin's culpability is bigger than Khairy's because he is one of the people behind the Sheraton Move, besides supporting Muhyiddin. He is a PN member in Umno," Ramasamy said.

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