Monday, September 29, 2008


Wishing everyone EID MUBARAK.
May All Your Prayers be answered and blessed with happiness.
May Allah blessing find you hope,faith and happiness.
Drive carefully during this festive season and help the poors.
Pandu Cermat Jiwa Selamat.
May Allah shower us with His blessings.


p.s: i'll be off for quite sometime.raya time.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Ku Li: Reject delay of party polls

Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah has called on Umno members to reject the postponement of party elections to March next year, purportedly to facilitate a smooth transition of power, as it is not provided for in the party constitution.
“This is extra-constitutional. If there is a transition of power, according to the party constitution, it must be done every three years at all levels,” he said.
He said that the plan for Prime Minister and Umno president Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to hand over reign to his deputy Najib Abdul Razak was akin to “passing property” from one to another.
He told a press conference at his Kuala Lumpur residence this afternoon that the new Umno plan unveiled by the party's supreme council yesterday was not acceptable because office bearers should be decided by party members according to party rules.
“If Umno members still believe in the struggle and if they still love the party, to which I have no reasons to doubt, I’m sure they will reject the plan. “This is not a sandiwara nor a game; First it was on, then off; December, then March, then June. Decide! It is not a small thing. The whole country is waiting to see what happens to the leadership of Umno and the country,” he said.
Tengku Razaleigh stressed several times during the 50-minute press conference that the transition plan was undemocratic and had made Malaysia an international laughing stock.
He said that public anxiety was on the rise as a result of the confusion being caused by the transition plan.
“Even I am getting a bit confused,” he said.
Still gunning for No 1
To a question, Tengku Razaleigh said he is still seeking nominations to contest as party president, regardless whether Abdullah would be defending his post or not.
“I’m praying that I will obtain 140 nominations (to win by default),” he said in jest.
Abdullah is currently under pressure to quit before the party polls and is said to be able to obtain the mandatory 58 nominations from 191 Umno divisions, which will start meeting on Oct 9.
Abdullah now has up to Oct 9 to decide on his fate.
Asked if he would ever reconsider offering himself as a candidate for the party elections, he replied, “I was the first to offer myself (for the post). I don’t normally make ‘flip-flop’ decisions”.
Tengku Razaleigh said that he has not been campaigning because party rules forbid him from doing so, but he would reveal his plan to revive the economy soon, which he will implement if made prime minister.
He claimed that his plan would increase per capita gross domestic income from US$4,000 to US$10,000 in less than five years.
Tengku Razaleigh also brushed aside Kelantan Umno liaison chief Annuar Musa’s claim that the transition plan has the full backing of the state. “I didn’t attend the meeting, nor did several other division leaders. How can it be unanimous?” said Tengku Razaleigh, who is also Gua Musang Umno division chief and the constituency’s MP.
He said it was likely that there were attempts by certain state leaders to pander to those in Kuala Lumpur and that the grassroots did not agree with the plan.

tunku : we hope to see all the post in umno to be contested. let ku li and najib or anyone else fight for the president post, let the members decide who they want as their president, then only umno will be strong enough with a president that is backed by majority.

Early Power Transition Not Due To Pressure From Me - Muhyiddin

MUAR, Sept 27 (Bernama) -- Umno Vice-President Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's decision to hand over power to Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak earlier than planned was not due to pressure from him.
Muhyiddin said his views on the prime minister's leadership, although sometimes harsh, were not aimed at hurting feelings but rather, for the sake of the party's future.
"The decision is not due to pressure from me. I think the prime minister has considered all factors and we hope that the decision is accepted by all," he told reporters after attending the tahlil prayers at the Jalan Bakri surau here last night.
He was responding to questions on the notions that his views had contributed to the decision to hasten the leadership transition between Abdullah and Najib, which was earlier planned to take place only in June 2010.
Abdullah, who is Umno president, announced yesterday that the Umno general assembly, scheduled for December this year, had been postponed to March next year to facilitate an early transition plan between him and his deputy.
Muhyiddin, who is International Trade and Industry Minister, also said that the early handover of power would eliminate uncertainties and give investors a clearer picture on the situation in the country.
Muhyiddin also hoped that party members would continue to support the party and concentrate on restoring the people's confidence towards Umno and Barisan Nasional.
On the postponement of the Umno general assembly, Muhyiddin said it was an appropriate move which should be accepted by all.

tunku : i hope muhyiddin will not stop pressuring them to drop the quota system.of course pak lah was under pressure, if not he won't resign early, thank god that he realized how he is a burden to the party.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Retain the AGM as previously scheduled-Mukhriz


A Demand by UMNO Grassroots Members to Retain the Annual General Assembly as Previously Scheduled for December 2008

September 26 2008

Pak Lah is responsible for leading us into the disastrous 12th general elections which resulted in the lost of five states and the Federal Territory to the opposition coalition. Barisan Nasional lost its longstanding two-thirds majority and the overall popular vote nationally. The poor electoral outcome shows how he has failed miserably in discharging his duties and responsibility to UMNO members and the Barisan Nasional. Since then, Pak Lah has lost any political legitimacy and the moral authority to lead UMNO and Barisan Nasional.
Furthermore, the postponement of the UMNO General Assembly demonstrates the fact that Pak Lah only seeks to preserve his political power but without wanting or being able to live up to the responsibilities and sacred duties that come with it. As such, he has long ceased to be our rightful leader and we therefore need not follow his self-preserving "instructions". Pak Lah cannot tell us what to do or what not to do in exercising our rights as party members in the UMNO that truly belongs to the ordinary members and the Rakyat. So in this UMNO elections, for as long as we remain true to our party that was built by our founding fathers and adhere to the ideals, constitution and rules of UMNO-we are morally upright and cannot be accused of any wrongdoing in exercising our constitutional rights in choosing our leaders in a just and timely fashion in December of 2008.
We, the true defenders of UMNO must exercise our prerogative and constitutional right to elect whomever we so desire or see fit to the top posts of our party. Nothing in God's earth can stop us from performing our sacred responsibility and duty for the sake of the survival of our party, the future of our children and the integrity of our proud nation. We vehemently reject the ill-advised decision to postpone the Annual General Assembly to March 2009. This decision is a blatant attempt to deny the grassroots members of UMNO their voice and aspirations to be heard and reflected in the ballot box solely in order to preserve those in control of our beloved party.
We therefore demand that in the best interest of the party and in recognition of the wishes of UMNO's brave but ignored grassroots members- the said Annual General Assembly be held as scheduled for December 2008!

Hidup UMNO!
Berani Berubah!

Mukhriz Mahathir

Postponement Can 'Complicate Campaign', Khairy Says

KEMAMAN, Sept 26 (Bernama) -- Umno Youth vice head Khairy Jamaluddin has said that the decision of the party's Supreme Council to move the General Assembly to March next year can complicate the campaigns of those standing in the election.
The campaign period which was originally only two months would be extended to six months and this would make it difficult for the candidates eyeing higher posts like himself, he said.
"We know this may be the final decision. For those contesting for the post of divisional youth head, it is okay but for me who is contesting for the youth head of the movement, it will be a decision which complicates the campaign.
"The campaign period will become longer and it will not be easy. Remember the two-week election campaign, even that was not easy what more six months.
"It is in this six months we have to campaign," he told Bernama after attending a breaking of fast at the residence of Terengganu Besar Datuk Ahmad Said in Kijal here Friday night.
Khairy who is Rembau Member of Parliament, has announced his candidacy for the post of Umno Youth head during party elections which were initially slated for December.
However, the Umno Supreme Council today decided to move the date of the General Assembly, during which the elections are to be held, to March next year.
The divisional delegates meetings, where nominations for national posts will take place, will start on Oct 9 as scheduled.
Khairy said Umno Youth would respect and abide by the decision of the Supreme Council.
Ahmad who is Terengganu Umno liaison chief also said that the Supreme Council's decision had to be respected. "It proves that the power transition in Umno as the main Malay party runs perfectly and in order," he said.
Umno president and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said earlier that the postponement was to facilitate an early transition of power although the original plan was for him to hand over to his deputy, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, in June 2010.
Meanwhile, Khairy who yesterday claimed that he was being sabotaged by certain quarters who prevented party grassroots from meeting him, said he would not hesitate to diclose the culprits if they continued to do so.
He said he would bring the matter up to the Supreme Council if his campaign was adversely affected by the restriction. "So far, it is not too serious but it has more or less affected the campaign," he said.
Besides Khairy, others who have offered themselves for the same post are Jerlun Member of Parliament Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, Perlis Umno liaison deputy chairman Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin and former Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohamad Khir Toyo.
When asked whether the restriction came from his rivals, Khairy said: "I need not comment; make your own assumptions."

tunku : this man always talks the opposite way. he is the happiest man for the delayed AGM. i understand hat the others don't have enough resources like he has, they are the one who will be exhausted.kj will be happy as he is full of resources. as for the restriction, he is the one who started it first with his gangho , azeez , reezal etc. don't think others can't do it to you. dato seri khir toyo were bashed all out by his group so did that he has to taste his own medicine, he is complaining up and down.if you still not happy with the delayed AGM, tell your father in law so step down in december and let the AGM be in december as was planned earlier.

Postponing Umno General Assembly A Wise Move, Says Najib

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 26 (Bernama) -- Umno postponing its general assembly scheduled for December to March next year is a wise move, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
Najib, who is also Umno deputy president, said the decision was taken in line with the wishes of the grassroots.
"The actual dates for the four-day assembly will be notified later but it will definitely be held in March," he told reporters after attending a special meeting of Umno's Supreme Council (MT) here Friday.
The MT decided to move the assembly date to March to facilitate a smooth and earlier power transition in the party.
Prime Minister and Umno president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi when announcing the postponement of the assembly said he would make a decision about seeking re-election for the presidency by Oct 9.
Under the original power transition plan, Abdullah was to hand over the reins of the country's and Umno's leadership to Najib in June 2010.

tunku : it is the wish of the members for early transition but not delaying AGM.delaying the AGM is the wish of the supreme council members.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Muhyiddin: March is new deadline for Pak Lah to quit

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 26 - Umno vice president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said today the postponement of the party elections to March next year indicates a new deadline had been set for party president Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi to step down.
"It was earlier decided 2010, but at today's meeting the president and deputy president indicated that the postponement from December to March is to facilitate earlier transition, you can analyze anyway you want, but as far as I am concern, maybe a new deadline has been set, but let the president make the announcement," he told reporters after the supreme council special meeting today.
"I sense magnanimity in making this decision which is very important for the party," said the International Trade and Industry Minister.
When asked whether he was satisfied with the decision, as it is still unclear whether March 2009 is the new deadline, Muhyiddin said: "There must be some element of trust on the decision made today, there is no need for unnecessary speculation."
"Most importantly, we have to wait before the divisional meetings as the divisions need a clear sign whether the president will defend his position, it is not for me to say, but wait for his announcement," said Muhyiddin.
"Let's not pre-empt what is going to be. I cannot go beyond that," he said.
He added that the postponement reflects the sentiment on the ground and will not affect Abdullah's integrity.
"Whatever decision we make it must not split the party and adversely affect the president's image," said Muhyiddin.
"This is the best time to close ranks, because we have a bigger agenda to bring back the confidence and rebuilding the Barisan Nasional," he added.
Muhyiddin was the first senior Umno leader to urge Abdullah to reconsider the 2010 deadline.
He is also widely speculated to be considering a tilt for the party's deputy presidency.
Malaysia Insider

tunku : so let us all wait till 9th october to hear what pak lah has to say. base on what had transpired during the special meeting is he has to make announcement that he will not defend his party president's position.

Exit Pak Lah

SEPT 26 - It is game over for Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.
His 2010 transition plan was shredded by his deputy and the Umno Supreme Council today and he was presented with little choice but to accept the exit plan.
The plan calls for the Umno General Assembly and party elections to be postponed from December till March next year. Divisions will still meet from October 9 and nominate candidates for top positions in the party.
At a brief press conference after the Supreme Council meeting, Abdullah appeared to suggest as much that the 2010 plan had been dumped.
The Umno president said: "If we want to make it before 2010, it is not an issue."
He also added that he would make an announcement before October 9, when party divisions will meet to nominate their candidates for the party leadership.
One name not likely to be considered is Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. He is expected to announce that he will not defend his party president's position, possibly just after the Hari Raya holidays.
He will then stay on as party president and prime minister until March 2009. Presumably he will be given some time to complete some of the reforms he promised Malaysians and then be given a grand send off at the party assembly.
Party vice president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who has been one of those pressuring Pak Lah to step down earlier, said after the meeting, that the postponement of the general assembly was effectively a new deadline for Abdullah to leave office.
The extension of his term of office until at least March will not remove the bitter feeling among Abdullah's supporters that he allowed himself to be outflanked by Najib and other supreme council members,
A day earlier, Najib told Abdullah that the party assembly and elections would be pushed back to June.
This morning, the two men met privately just before the Supreme Council meeting, and it became March.
Even though no words to the effect were uttered by the council, it is clear that they want Abdullah out sooner rather than later.
Malaysia Insider

tunku : you never know about pak lah, he decide onsomething and then the next minute he changes his mind after being persuaded by his people.flip flop flip flop. hope march 2009 will really be the dateline for him to resign and he will announce it on the 9th october.

AGM postponed, Pak Lah mum on plans

The Umno supreme council dealt a blow to Abdullah Ahmad Badawi by putting off party polls and its annual general meeting to March next year, in the bid to force the party leader to hand over power to his deputy.
The Umno annual general meeting, along with party elections, was originally scheduled to be held in December.
However divisional elections will proceed as scheduled from Oct 9 to Nov 9.
The decisions were made at an hour-long emergency supreme council meeting held this morning at Umno headquarters.
Abdullah had earlier said he would hand over power to his deputy, Najib Abdul Razak, in two years' time.
Speaking to reporters later, Abdullah refused to comment if he would defend his president's post at the party polls, saying that he would decide before the division-level meetings on Oct 9 - giving him a window of two weeks to .
"I have not made any decision as far as this particular point is concerned, I intend to do it before the division meetings begin," he said.
"The decision is mine, you can go on guessing. As far as I'm concerned, I love the party."
"The postponement of the AGM is to facilitate the transition plan," he added.
Asked by reporters if he would be going on leave soon, Abdullah said: "I'm not going on leave?... I have lots of work to do."
Private meeting
Najib was also present at the press conference but did not make any comments throughout 9-minute session.
Before the start of the supreme council meeting this morning, Abdullah and Najib had a private 30-minute meeting.
The original deal was for the power transition to happen in June 2010.
However, Abdullah has come under tremendous pressure in recent weeks to bring forward this date, preferably to the middle of next year.
This was the second time this month that the highest decision making body of the party had met. It held its monthly meeting last Thursday.
Meanwhile, party information chief Muhd Muhd Taib told reporters that the decision to postpone the party polls was good for all, "for the president and the party".
He said that all supreme council members welcomed the decision as it helped ease the tension surrounding the party's transition plan.

Abdullah to decide by Oct 9 on Umno presidency

KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi will make a decision on whether he will defend the Umno presidency before the party's divisional level elections begin on Oct 9.
The Umno president and Prime Minister said this after charing a special party supreme council meeting at PWTC here Friday morning.
Abdullah also announced that the party's general assembly has been postponed to March next year.
However, he said that the Umno divisional elections would go on as scheduled from Oct 9 to Nov 9.
The Umno general assembly was earlier slated for Dec 16 to 20.
He said the postponement was to facilitate an "early power transition" from him to his deputy Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
The original transition plan, which was announced in July, would have seen Najib take over from Abdullah by June 2010.
To a question on whether this meant that he would not be seeking re-election to the Umno presidency, Abdullah said: "I have not decided yet. I will make a decision before the (Umno) divisional elections (from Oct 9 to Nov 9)."
Abdullah also said the special meeting went on well and he was not pressured by any of the supreme council members to quit.
Friday’s meeting by the 25-member Umno supreme council was the latest in a fast-moving chain of events in Umno politics since the fasting month began.
After last week’s supreme council meeting, several state Umno chiefs were said to have convened at Abdullah’s official residence for a meeting during which they urged Abdullah to get a firmer commitment from Najib regarding the coming party elections.
Some of them were concerned that Najib had, on the one hand, expressed support for the transition plan but on the other, had said he would leave the final decision to delegates attending the Umno division meetings next month.
The meeting took place between 1am and 3am on Tuesday. That same evening, Abdullah and Najib had a four-eyed meeting.
On Wednesday afternoon, Najib chaired a hastily convened Umno management committee meeting, presumably to brief them and get a consensus on what had transpired between him and the Prime Minister.
The management committee, chaired by Najib, comprises key Umno leaders including vice-presidents, secretary-general, treasurer, information chief and leaders of the Wanita, Youth and Puteri wings.
Members of the committee have been extremely tight-lipped about the meeting following Najib’s stern warning on confidentiality.
On Thursday morning, another four-eyed meeting took place between Abdullah and Najib. It is understood that the meeting was to convey what transpired among the management committee members.
It was Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin who lit the spark when he urged Abdullah to consider an earlier exit plan. That spark became a flame when Najib announced he would let the division meetings decide on the transition of power.
His statement was widely read as an indication that he would be open to being nominated for the top party post.
However, he has also repeatedly stressed that he is opposed to a “takeover of power” and was looking instead at a “handover of power”.

Reactions from Muhyiddin, Rafidah, Najib

Trade Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, one of those pushing for a revamped leadership, indicated that the 2010 handover plan was now abandoned.
"As far as I'm concerned it's a new deadline that has been set. I sense he is showing some magnanimity," he told reporters.
Muhyiddin backed the decision to fix a new date for the Umno polls, a move seen by observers as a face-saving way for Abdullah to avoid an embarrassing leadership challenge.
"In a way it is to bring forward the deadline," he said, calling for an end to the rift in the ruling party over the timetable for Abdullah's departure.
"It is time for us to close ranks," he said.
Rafidah Aziz, the party Wanita chief, also suggested the premier would step down earlier than planned.
"We agreed with what was said, it was a comprehensive decision. It is to facilitate an earlier transition, so take it as that," she said.
Although Najib is clearly Abdullah's heir apparent, the revised plan allows the new leadership to be formally elected by the party next March. The 2010 handover deal had been criticised as undemocratic by some Umno leaders.
"This is good for the party," Najib said.
"This follows Umno's tradition and at the same time we have taken into account the views of party members, so I think there is a lot of wisdom in today's decision."

tunku : pak lah is just trying to buy time. he should know the reason why the party AGM is postponed and should tell everyone what his intention is, that if he REALLY loves the party.let us see what more he has to sell by 9th october.they are making umno like their own property, they just postpone the AGM to suits is already postponed to december and now again to march next year.again it is only decided by them.

Revised pact: A win-win for both camps?

The speculation that Umno’s polls could be put off to next June to pave the way for an early power transition has sparked mixed responses from party leaders. It is believed that the party is divided over such postponement, some want Umno president and Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to instead hand over the reins immediately to his deputy, Najib Abdul Razak.
Umno is gearing up for a bitter contest for top leadership posts in December when the party holds its annual general assembly, with a few leaders suggesting that this would be the best time for Abdullah to quit.
But for those who back the new power transfer date, the proposed arrangement will be a ‘win-win’ for the two squabbling camps. Abdullah had earlier stitched a pact with Najib to transfer power in two years’ time - in June 2010.
“It’s a good compromise - between this December and 2010. It’s a win-win formula for both groups - the group which wants him to go early and (the group which wants) to stick to 2010. June next year is the middle point,” Umno supreme council member Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz told Malaysiakini.
“It can give time to the prime minister to sort out whatever that is needed to be sorted out,” he said, adding that it will also help to resolve the current political unrest within the ruling party.
Nevertheless, Nazri - who is also de facto law minister - stressed that the postponement of the election must be done in accordance to the party’s constitution.
Best to let members decide
However, other leaders argued that the party grassroots should have the final say on the transition plan.
Supreme council member Dr Abdul Latiff Ahmad wants the party to stick to its December election date. “To me, (the) sooner the better. At the end of the day, we should leave the matter to the party grassroots to decide as this is their right under the party constitution,” he said. “We’ve long ‘tuned’ our mind to the December date and all prepared for that,” added Abdul Latiff, who is also the deputy health minister.
Another supreme council member Mahadzir Khalid, when contacted, said as far as he was aware, the postponement of the party polls has not been discussed.
Under the Umno constitution, the party must hold an annual general meeting (AGM) within 18 months of its last meeting, with elections for party leadership being held every three years.
It is not clear whether the rumoured date of June 2 for the AGM - and to let Abdullah pass the baton to Najib - falls within the 18-month duration.
This is because the last AGM was held between Nov 5 and 9 last year and going by that calculation, the cut-off point for the 18-month period will be May 2009.
However, Umno information chief Muhammad Muhammad Taib was quoted in previous media reports as saying that the 18-month duration will only lapse in June next year.
New proposal made yesterday
The new deal was said to be negotiated at an Umno management committee meeting yesterday.
The meeting, which was chaired by Najib in his capacity as deputy president, comprised several top party leaders - vice-presidents Muhyiddin and Ali Rustam, secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Muhammad Taib, Wanita chief Rafidah Aziz and Youth chief Hishammuddin Hussein.
All but two - Tengku Adnan and Muhammad Taib - are known to want a quicker power transition.
An emergency Umno supreme council - the party’s highest decision-making body - slated for tomorrow is expected to discuss the matter.
While the new pact may help to pacify the growing calls for Abdullah to quit earlier than 2010, it however may not be able to silent those who are demanding the embattled premier to resign by the end of this year.
The Umno supreme council, which last met a week ago, saw a number of senior leaders telling Abdullah to quit earlier than he had originally planned.
The party No 1 was warned that he may not be able to get the 58 nominations needed to defend his post when Umno’s 191 divisions begin their meetings on Oct 9.

tunku : according to source, pak lah is trying hard to postpone the party election to june next year in order for him to stay longer till that time. some of the umno supreme council members agreed to his proposal and some are not. some told him to go june next year, some says now and few of them says per reported by mykmu, najib did not agree for the postponement which i think is right. the party election should not be postponed.let the party members decide.if majority wants pak lah to stay on, let it be then , also if the majority wants him to go,then he has in order for things to be running smoothly in umno without much havoc, it is best for pak lah to set a NEAREST date for him to resign, that is if he really cares about umno.if he cares more for the family then he will not do it.

Lukewarm support in Umno for 2010 plan

Umno president Abdullah Ahmad Badawi faces a uphill task in getting party grassroots to accept the 2010 transition plan where he would hand over the country’s premiership to his deputy Najib Abdul Razak.
While two states, Kelantan and Penang, have come out to back Abdullah, the situation is different in key Umno states of Selangor, Johor, Sabah and Terengganu. In a meeting between Selangor Umno division chiefs and Abdullah in Tanjung Karang last night, the leaders took the opportunity to quiz the party leader about the plan. Abdullah had urged the division chiefs to fully back the plan in view of the “huge challenge presently faced by Umno”. In the end, Abdullah could only garner lukewarm support.
According to reliable sources, the division chiefs provided Abdullah support for the transition plan, on condition that all Umno supreme council members unanimously endorse the plan first.
“This means that all the supreme council members must accept the plan and stop questioning it,” said a source.
The source was referring to several supreme council members who had publicly and privately asked for Abdullah to step down and bring forward the transition plan.
Already breaking ranks?
Despite the conclusion to the meeting yesterday, at least two divisions in Selangor are already planning to go against the transition plan.
Shah Alam division treasurer Abdul Manan Said told Malaysiakini that its division plans to nominate Najib and incumbent Umno vice-president Muhyiddin Yassin for the top two posts. “The decision was made in accordance with the wishes of 95 percent of the 84 branches during their branch meetings (last month),” he said. Petaling Jaya Utara division has yet to officially state their position on the transition plan, but its Youth wing head Mohd Ali Mohd Saad said talks among members is that the Najib-Muhyiddin combo is likely be nominated. The sole division that has pledged support for the 2010 transition plan was Sepang.
However, the majority of the Selangor Umno divisions contacted said that the transition plan is likely to be discussed after Aidilfitri celebrations next week.
Terengganu too against plan
Over in Terengganu, a quick survey of all eight Umno divisions - Besut, Setiu, Kemaman, Kuala Terengganu, Kuala Nerus, Dungung, Hulu Terengganu and Marang - revealed that only one division is prepared to back the 2010 transition plan. A Kuala Terengganu division committee member, who requested anonymity, said their members were prepared to back the plan. Differing, Besut deputy division chief Wan Zakarian Wan Abdul Rahman opined that Abdullah should hand the reign over to Najib at an earlier date. “Due to the present political climate, the grassroots want change at the top,” said Wan Zakaria when contacted.
Division leaders in Kemaman and Setiu were non-committal about the position of their members while leaders from Kuala Nerus, Dungun, Hulu Terengganu and Marang declined comment on the matter.
All Umno divisions will hold their annual general meetings beginning Oct 9 next month where they will also decide on their nominees for the party’s top-two posts.
Time is running short for Abdullah as he would need to muster at least 58 nominations from the party’s 191 divisions nationwide in order to defend his party presidency during the December polls.
However, the party has called for an emergency supreme council meeting tomorrow to discuss the matter.

tunku : as i'm been informed majority of the selangor divisions want pak lah to go soon except for fews like the one headed by noh(tanjong karang) and of course sepang(zin badak-jkr minister).if umno really listen to the ground and not it leaders, they all want pak lah to go. unfortunately, only few of them have the power to decide , the division head plays important role.he will only send the G7(representatives of a division) which he thinks will back his decision. money politics plays it part too(that is the main sickness in umno right now).if only every member's vote counts.

Early Power Transition Date?

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 25 (Bernama) -- Will the special Umno supreme council (MT) meeting Friday decide to set an early power transition date between Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his deputy Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak or discuss more effective ways to strengthen the party?
The former was the question uppermost among politicians and political observers soon after it was made public that Umno would convene an MT meeting at 10am at the party's headquarters here.
Over the last two days, the political rumour mill has been going on overdrive, with speculation that the nation's top two leaders were involved in "re-brokering" the transition date originally set for June 2010, which some say had caused dissatisfaction among Umno members aligned to some leaders.
The two leaders had earlier agreed that Abdullah would transfer power to Najib by June 2010, but this was seen by some segments in Umno as being too long, especially with the largest political party in the country holding its party polls in December this year.
The first signs of dissent was evident after Abdullah on Sept 17 made a public announcement that he did not rule out an early handover of power and was swapping his Finance Minister portfolio with Najib's defence portfolio.
Political observers intepreted this move that the handover of power would come sooner than 2010, with some predicting that it could even come as soon as December, this year.
Speculation picked up steam Wednesday evening after the Deputy Prime Minister's office in a statement said that Najib had cancelled his trip to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly from today till Oct 1.
This was followed by a series of "secret" meetings between the two leaders and their supporters, and speculation was rife that an agreement on the transition was reached after both parties agreed on a deadline for the power transfer.
Midnight Wednesday, calls and short-message-system (sms) were aplenty predicting that an early transition date had been set and that it could be a year earlier than the 2010 original date.
This speculation was further strengthened when news leaked that Abdullah and Najib were huddled in a meeting at the Prime Minister Office in Putrajaya Thursday morning, which was neither denied nor confirned by Najib when met by newsmen later in the day and was only willing to say, "I always meet the Prime Minister".
There is also speculation that the December polls would be postponed to June 2009 to ensure a smooth transfer of power and minimise internal politicking. "We are expecting something positive to come out tomorrow at the meeting," a party insider told Bernama.
"It would be a win-win situation between those calling for an immediate hand over and those wanting to stick to the original date (June 2010)," he added.
He also pointed out that the two top leaders did not want to announce the decision before obtaining the endorsement of the all powerful MT, the party's highest decision making body.
"They do not want to repeat the mistake...the last time they reached a deal, there were grouses that it should have been the MT and members that decided the handover date and not the two men.
They can only propose but the MT must endorse and members must accept it ," a party source said.
This latest speculated proposal, if accepted by the MT, would help avoid a bitter power struggle in the party, which Umno, the backbone of the ruling Barisan Nasional, can ill afford especially after the coalition was battered in the March 8 general election.
Another indication that something "big" is on the cards was Najib refusal to answer any political questions at a press conference at the Finance Ministry Thursday afternoon.
He only confirmed that a special UMNO MT meeting would be held tomorrow at Menara Dato' Onn.
"Any political questions will only be answered tomorrow," he said in reply to a question on the speculation that the Umno polls would be postponed until next year.
Such was the sensitivity of the issue at hand that top Umno leaders contacted by Bernama politely refused to divulge details of the latest party transition plans. While the nation waits in anticipation over the next 24-hours, it can be assured that the top two leaders would do what is right for the country and its people.

tunku : why suddenly there is talk about early power transition when last few days we saw some ngo's supporting the 2010 plan , with penang and kelantan throwing full support behind it and all the state umno chairman camped up at sri perdana till 3am to show support for the pm? there is 2 possibilities here, one is that there will be no early transition, second is they realized that they had the minority support,hence opt out for early transition in order for the president not to be thrown out during AGM.

Umno at the crossroads

The Sun

theSun: In 2004 there was talk you were going to contest for the deputy Umno Youth chief's post. But you didn't and so gave a free ride to Khairy Jamaluddin. But now you are going after the number one post in the youth wing in a race that involves Khairy and others. Seeing how critical you have been of the party leadership, I suppose it is only to be expected. But why didn't you in 2004?

Mukhriz: Actually, I never intended to. I was brought in by Youth chief Datuk Hishammuddin Hussein. So it was only proper that I asked his permission to participate in the contest - but only for the executive councillor's post. Just for the exco position. It was only later that word got around that I was going for number two.
It all started in Kubang Pasu, my father's division for a long time. I was contesting for the ketua pemuda in Kubang Pasu. Despite me having the highest nomination, yet during the meeting itself they nominated me for the national deputy youth chief post. When that happened I felt that something was already not right because I did not offer myself for that position and I felt like this was sort of a consolation because basically I was going to lose in the race for the division youth chief position. So to sort of console me, they nominated me for the national position. It was just a nomination, it doesn't mean anything. And sure enough I lost the Kubang Pasu youth chief post. But at the same time I received calls asking whether I was contesting for the national deputy youth chief post. At that time there was talk Datuk Norza Zakaria was going to contest also but eventually he withdrew. By that time I received about five nominations which was nothing. I actually made a press statement saying that my intention was only to be an exco member. I never offered myself for the national deputy youth chief post.
So when people asked why I didn't go for it, I said when initially your intention was to only to perform sembahyang sunat how can you suddenly change to sembahyang zohor.

Of course, generally, people reported that you withdrew. Anyway that raised your profile a bit. But what gave you much prominence was when you said that the speech by the Umno president, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, at the opening of the 2006 assembly had nothing of significance, it was the same as the previous years. People, especially Umno members, sat up. Some castigated you. Why did you do it? It was not the Umno culture to say something like that but you seemed to buck the trend. Even Barisan Nasional component party leaders say only the nicest things.

Let's put it this way. I was a Kubang Pasu branch member. I attend all sorts of meetings including those with ketuas kampung and the villagers. These are grassroots members and supporters; mostly fishermen and farmers. They had a lot of grievances, some are simple requests like lighting for the villages, better roads and water supply, etc. These are grassroots issues.
The branch chiefs, the branch wanita and youth heads will often speak up. They will touch on various issues especially Malay economy, how they feel that it is not so easy to earn a decent living and times are tough and they need championing by Umno to get the government to look into this matter seriously. So I believed that if that happened in Kubang Pasu, it probably happened in other divisions as well. Normally, there will be about two months gap from the division to the Umno General Assembly.

So you would expect that some of the issues from the divisions will be brought up at the general assembly.

Yes, you see the highest authority in Umno is not the supreme council but the general assembly. Thus, there are such high hopes that Umno will address all these grassroots issues. That is one part of the general assembly, the voice of the grassroots.
The second part is the president's policy speech. It by definition means that the president will spell out the policies of the party for the next three years, or five years or even ten years. So this is what we take home with us. The policy speech is such an important speech. In fact, I had asked my father and he said that the president's address to the Umno general assembly is the most important speech that year - even when compared to other speeches made by the prime minister or even the budget speech. My father took a lot of time preparing that speech.

I suppose for your father it was more difficult preparing that speech than when speaking in response to the debates on the last day of the assembly.

I'm sure. During the three days of debates, he took notes. His policy speech and closing speech were very different in terms of content and style because the policy speech was written where he had given it a lot of thought and he would formulate what he wants to say. But then he has three days to respond to comments from the debates, so the closing speech is more impromptu. And in terms of style he was not reading but more like responding.
I have seen my father draft the speech and I think he went through it about 15 to 16 times before he was happy with it. And even as he walked to the rostrum he would be thinking about it and sometimes ad lib some little details even as he was reading the speech. It was something worthwhile for the members to take home.
So what you are saying is that members came with high expectations of taking home something to think about?

Yes. I had a very high expectation of the president's policy speech in 2006. Maybe I became a little more critical after I was made to understand what Umno politics was really all about especially after my father lost in his bid to be a delegate to the assembly. So I was not in a mood to be patient. And I listened carefully and critically to Pak Lah's speech. And when in my comments I said it was like the one made the previous year, I was not wrong because he actually said in his speech that he was going to repeat stuff from the previous year.

So by daring to be different you were actually stating the obvious?

When I made those comments I was also not representing Pemuda, I was wearing a bright red baju Melayu sitting with the Kubang Pasu division delegates right at the back.
When I walked down after the speech, I saw all the BN leaders being interviewed by the press and I almost sensed what they said without actually hearing them. I knew all of them supported the speech saying that it was great. So I thought what's wrong with being the only one out of the many with a contrary view. I am not even the balancing factor with the 20 others. So I thought why not, I was sure there were people there who perhaps felt the same way. I needed to show that at least there is someone who doesn't support blindly all the time. So when the reporters approached me for my comments, many of them were taken aback. I remember one asked me, "Are you sure you want to say that?" and I said, "Yes, why?" And the TV reporter's hand was literally shaking and after I had spoken, he said, "You do know that we cannot air that ..." and I said, "that's up to you; I've said what I wanted to say."

Some people later commented that what you did was good in a way. They said what you had done was to make people listen critically to the president's speech and not to take things for granted.

I felt very disappointed as a delegate, that the topmost leader in the party, took acceptance of the president's policy speech for granted. As I said just now, we had branch meetings and there are over 10,000 branches all over the country, and we took our meetings seriously. And, therefore, to deliver a speech that has no bearing at all to what people felt on the ground - and they have come from all over the country to PWTC to listen to this - is, to put it mildly, unfair.
It was like any other speech, I mean anyone could have drafted it and you could just read it. We didn't have anything to take home. It was not a speech that helped us understand the issues or solved our problems or something that could inspire us. So I was deeply disappointed.

You know when you talk about branches they are actually important grassroots units or cells. Don't you get the feeling that if they are not taken care of or if their complaints go unheeded, they can actually disappear?

It is already happening.

You have suggested that to prevent this, the branches must be made to feel relevant and important. One way of doing it is to allow the branches to state who they want to lead them at the national level. You explained that it is sort of a demonstration that they too are relevant.

Yes, I did suggest that. It would also make it worthwhile for branch members to attend their branch meetings. Otherwise they may feel irrelevant. When branch members feel this way, they may not even feel the need to attend meetings. They may feel that they have other things to attend to instead of attending a branch meeting where their voices are not heard.

While on the subject of money politics, I don't know whether you are aware that many people have said that the 2004 election was the most expensive election where the most amount of money was spent in buying votes. But there is already a feeling that the 2008 Umno election is going to be much bigger in terms of money spent to be elected.

Which is ironic ... 2004 and 2008 are like two different worlds. We were very dominant in 2004 and in 2008 we're literally limping. We lost five states and dominance in the Federal Territory. Despite that, some people in the party still indulge in that kind of arrogance of the pre-March 8 general election days. Especially those fighting for positions in the Umno elections. Why? Is this because they are very eager to take up positions in Umno to defend the party and defend BN so that we can win the next general election? I think not! I think they want positions in the party so that they can win government contracts, government positions, favours.

So you think this Umno elections is going to be like other Umno elections? No change despite what happened on March 8?

Not quite. I think this Umno election is going be a defining one. It doesn't matter who gets elected. But if the general public especially the Malays and those Malays in the party see that the party hasn't changed despite March 8, and that we are still indulging in all kinds of nonsense like money politics, for instance, then there will be a wholesale defection from Umno and the BN. You can be sure this Umno election is going to be closely watched.

You know Datuk, after you made that statement criticising the president's speech in 2006 and then subsequently you were known to be very critical, and many people were surprised that you were nominated to contest in the general election. How do you see this?

Well, there was already some sort of tradition in Umno that the former Umno president's children, at least one of them be given a chance to be a member of Parliament. I've been active in Umno so they thought that it was an opportune time to get tested in the real political world and not just party politics. Still, I was surprised when Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid informed me by phone that I was being fielded - and in Jerlun. I was shaken a bit. The only person I knew in Jerlun was the ketua pemuda and the division chief Datuk Rahman Ariffin, whose place I was taking over. So you can imagine what was going on in my head.

There are people who said that after being chosen to contest you should at least be grateful. But immediately after winning Jerlun you called for the PM to step down. How do you explain what you did?

I am one who believes in reality as a virtue. But there are other virtues also, one of it is to speak up when there is something that needs to be rectified, as long as your heart is in the right place and you are sincere about it. Another virtue is hard work, to be of service to the people. Honesty is another one. You can't just look at one. OK, so we won in Jerlun but we lost the whole of Kedah and this has never happened. Yes, everyone said that PAS was making huge in-roads but no one said that we were going to lose the whole state. I was sad and then to learn that Penang, Perak and Selangor had also gone to the Opposition. I felt that the whole world around me was crumbling.
When you talk about everyone, you mean Umno members?

Umno members and Malays in general. That we were almost obliterated. What's going on? Where was the leadership? That's when I thought, hey, look, in other countries if this happened, immediately the PM would take full responsibility and step down. How else to look at it. You took the credit for winning by a landslide in 2004, but you don't want to take credit for the losses. That was what prompted me to say what other people in the party refused to say openly.
My first statement was in Seberang Jaya. I had to do it as statements by our leaders sounded so arrogant. "Ah, we still won!", "We're only eight seats away from the two-thirds majority", "BN is still in power"; "the people are still with us!" You know, this is not the time to say that. This is the time to say that "we hear you", "we understand the message and the signal that you have sent" which means that we need to rectify from within and it was a time to be humble about the losses. I mean you can't say that we have won even if we won a simple majority in Parliament, we have never lost 2/3 other than in 1969, and and you remember what happened then. This is 2008 and this is the biggest setback ever.

What made you decide to contest for the Umno Youth chief's post?

To win back the young people to the party. The general election and the Permatang Pauh by-election showed that many young people are no longer with us. Worse still, the words they use to describe us. Words like meluat (fed up) and menyampah (rubbish) to basically say that they are sick and tired. But more recently the words they used were benci (hate) and jijik (messy). It somehow changed from the past two months. It got from bad to worse. So, definitely something needs to be done about this. I still feel that Umno is the backdrop or the medium for change. But the way we have been going about doing things, it's obvious now that it did not make a single impact in the people especially the young. We were doing things like parachuting in the Antarctica, swimming across the Malacca Strait, I mean that is nice for a Malaysia Boleh type of people but how does it solve problems? It is sort of a feel good activity but for a guy who is facing difficulty in borrowing RM10,000 from the bank, how do you solve this problem? Factory workers with housing problems, facing urban issues and young people all on their own. And we are not even doing anything about it. It is supposed to be our duty but we did not do much. And then we act surprised when people reject us come election and by-election time.

You didn't actually speak up before 2006. Why?

I did. But before that I spoke up only during the Youth exco meetings.

Coming back to March 8 and the perception that Umno has not learnt from the near rout of the last general election. You think so?

I won't deny that that is the impression people get. Whether we are actually arrogant or not is another issue but in politics it is the impression that counts. For instance, the statements we make and coming from the PM himself when the general election results were announced.
I recall before the elections Bersih wanted to hold a mass demonstration. Pak Lah used strong words to warn them. He said at the Umno general assembly "Saya pantang dicabar!" And the next day they went ahead with it. It was widely reported. Perhaps that was not the right thing to say. Another thing before the elections, Pak Lah also said, "If you have any grievances why do you bring them out to the street? Why don't you express your grievances at the ballot box." And that was a challenge. And that was exactly what they did. This is why people have the perception that we are arrogant.

One would have expected that Umno and the other coalition members would rally after the general election to make the necessary changes for the BN to be strong and formidable again. Has Pak Lah made the rallying call? Can he provide the leadership for the BN to rebuild itself?

No. No way. Absolutely not. This will never happen as long as he is still the party president. I think he is the core problem now.

Why core problem?

You know, weak leadership, bad decision making, flip-flopping. What we have now is a crisis of confidence - crisis of trust in the government. It has come to the point now people don't even believe what you say. What more when the transition of power is being questioned, almost openly. And when one minister says something and another minister counters it, it is a reflection of a lack of leadership.
Because of your criticism of the party leadership, there are some Umno members who think that you would be one of those who would cross over to Pakatan Rakyat?

True. I am probably the most vocal in criticising my own government despite being a BN MP but you don't see me jumping over to the other side. I defend my right to speak up but don't ever anyone question my loyalty to the party. Why is it that when we have criticism from within the party we are accused of being the enemy within - in Malay there are couple of sayings like Musuh dalam selimut, gunting dalam lipatan, duri dalam daging and api dalam sekam which have been used against me. Why can't we be critical and still remain loyal to the party? It is not that we don't love the party. I think we should change that.

More people are speaking up in the party. Of course, you would say that this is good for further democratisation of the party.

Yes, yes, definitely. Some may say that during my father's time people were not speaking up. But I may be wrong, I think that when things are good and fine there may not be a need to speak up much but when things are not right, that is when people are driven to speak up because they want to right the wrong. So if we keep on saying that we have to adhere to instructions from the top then why are we here? And nothing is worse than the person himself literally ordering everyone to keep him in power. You call it a transition plan but then only one plan is considered. As such, it is not a plan, it is an instruction, a command.
How much of what you are, think and say is a reflection of what your father is?

Generally, it is similar but I might go about doing things in a different way. I believe in what he says.

What do you think are your chances of coming up on top in this race? There are many formidable aspirants.
I won't say fair to good; I won't say excellent because as you say money politics is still around. But I am waiting to see how it is going to impact on this race, whether our youth will reject it or succumb to it. If they go against their conscience, I would be in trouble. But I am cautiously optimistic that in the end some good sense will prevail.
And I hope they see that for us to restore confidence and to build up Umno Youth to the point that young people will come to support us again. I hope that I would be the one to be able to do it. I used the theme for the campaign "Dare to change". It can be interpreted as change at the top but it also means change from within. Let's just go by the virtues of honesty, responsibility, service to the people and good time keeping. Because if we don't do that people won't see us as virtuous then how are we to comment on others. Also I said that even if I win, I prefer not to have a government post.

The position of the Umno Youth chief is a full-time job. You don't have time to be running a government agency or ministry. There were some people who said, "You were very silly to say that, because how else are you going to move if you don't have the support from a ministry?" I asked what does that mean? Does it mean that you actually use government funds for our own politics. This is not what I want. This is probably why we lost. I want to stop that. Before, it was not the norm for an Umno Youth chief to be given a government post. It's so strange that we are all stumbling over each other vying for posts. There is so much to be done. It is not like there is a pot of gold at the end of the road. I definitely don't see it that way.
What I see are challenges and tribulation and a lot of hard work. We have to work really hard if we want to regain the confidence of young Malaysians.

What about Ketuanan Melayu? Will you be championing Ketuanan Melayu?

I think the term has been misconstrued because in English, it means supremacy, a very intimidating word. The way I see it is in the context of bumiputra being the majority. Even the United Nations acknowledges any government policies should benefit the majority whilst not denying the rights of the minority.
In this case, in Malaysia, the minorities are not denied their rights whether in the economic, political and social spheres. There is religious freedom. I believe the forces that are trying to keep us together are far stronger than the forces that are trying to break us apart. Let's focus on common issues like nation building.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Umno supreme council to hold emergency meet

A special Umno supreme council meeting will take place tomorrow morning amidst speculations that the party elections could be postponed to next year and the president might step down earlier than planned.
According to Umno information chief Muhammad Muhammad Taib, all members of the supreme council were informed of the meeting today.
When contacted, he said: "Yes there will be a meeting tomorrow. I just received a call earlier today that a special supreme council meeting will be held tomorrow."
Umno sources told Malaysiakini that the meeting will possibly see further deliberation on party president Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s power transition plan to his deputy Najib Abdul Razak.
Asked to confirm this, Muhammad said he was in the dark about the agenda of the meeting.
"I am in the dark just as you. All I know is I received the phone call and was told to attend the meeting tomorrow morning," he added.
Meanwhile, Najib also confirmed the meeting would be held tomorrow, telling reporters who swamped him with "political questions" to wait another 24 hours for the answers.
The 25-member supreme council is the top decision-making body in Umno, the country’s most powerful political party.
It usually meets on monthly basis and during last week’s meeting, a furore erupted when news leaked that several leaders, aligned to former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad, had openly demanded Abdullah’s resignation.
Led by vice-president Muhyiddin Yassin and Youth chief Hishammuddin Hussein, a number of top leaders warned Abdullah that he may not be able to get the minimum 58 nominations needed to defend his presidency.
Umno's 191 divisions begin their annual meetings on Oct 9, when they will also nominate candidates for the top posts.
AGM likely to be postponed
Another hot topic on the agenda is the postponement of party polls to next year to enable Abdullah to remain Umno president and prime minister until the handover.
Defered once before by the party due to the March 8 general elections, the Umno annual general assembly is to take place from Dec 16 to 20.
Party watchers are divided over when the assembly will be postponed to, but most believe it will take place early next year possibly in March rather than June given the groundswell of support for a fast leadership change.
"I suspect that this will also be discussed tomorrow and I believe that the postponement would act as the dateline for Abdullah to step down," said Nazri.

tunku : the outcome will be pak lah will stay till 2010.any other suggestions?

Support for PM hazy, talks of new deal

Despite near unanimous support from two states, including his hometown of Penang, embattled Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is not out of the woods yet in his bid to stay on as Umno president.
If a survey on Umno divisions in Johor conducted by Malaysiakini is any indication, then the 68-year-old leader may have only just begun on a rocky journey that could still spell his ouster, despite recent all-out efforts to retain the loyalty of his deputy, Najib Abdul Razak.
Rumours are also abuzz that his detractors are preparing for another showdown, working round-the-clock to convene another emergency supreme council meeting for later this week.
Negotiations are already underway between top party leaders - including Muhammad Muhammad Taib, Mohd Ali Rustam, Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Hishammuddin Hussein and Muhyiddin Yassin - to prepare the ground for the final battle.
According to a party insider, some of the terms on the table include Abdullah agreeing to step down next year - a year earlier than his stated timeline of 2010.
Other possibilities being negotiated include deferring the party's annual general assembly by another six months to June 2009, where Abdullah would then hand power over to Najib.
Meanwhile, Abdullah is set to visit state divisions across the country in a bid to convince members to not allow the top two party posts to be contested, a sacrifice he claims is necessary to unite the already bitterly-divided party.
Johor and Selangor rebel
But divisions in Johor, the stronghold of Umno southern lion Muhyiddin Yassin, reiterated to Malaysiakini they would allow the outcome for the top two posts to be determined by delegates at the party division meetings due next month.
“If there is to be change in the top leadership, then the party must make the changes without being tied to any timeline,” said Ayub Rahmad, Youth chief for Sekijang.
Both Abdullah and Najib agreed in July on a power transfer pact whereby the former would hand over the premiership and Umno presidency to the latter in June 2010.
The plan - pounded by critics as ‘undemocratic’ when it was unveiled - has since been endorsed by the party’s supreme council. Nevertheless, it has come under renewed and even more vigorous attack at next month’s division meetings.
Beginning Oct 9, delegates from 191 division across the nation will file their nominations for the party’s top posts.
Presidential candidates must win a minimum 58 nominations in order to qualify for election due to be held during the party assembly in December.
Abdullah, who does not want to be challenged for the No 1 post, moved quickly last week to appease his deputy, conceding his coveted finance portfolio to Najib, along with an assurance that he would also consider an early retirement.
However, dissenters led by former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad want Abdullah to quit now and are pushing Najib to break away from his boss. They want him to go for the top post with Muhyiddin in tow as the deputy presidential candidate.
"We are trying to avoid a political checkmate between the delegates and Abdullah and Najib. It would be a political suicide and terrible for Umno if the delegates reject their pact and show their independence,” a party insider told Malaysiakini.
In Johor, committee member for Segamat division, Mohd Azami Othman, said Abdullah should not even think about contesting with Najib as his number two.
“Because of that, it is better we leave it to the majority of delegates to decide on who they want to lead the party,” Mohd Azami said.
“I would like to advise Abdullah not to be taken in by reports from sycophantic quarters. In the end, their support may not materialise.”
Growing calls for Najib-Muhyiddin team
Ahmad Kemim, committe member of Johor Baru division, also told Malaysiakini a large number of grassroots wanted a Najib-Muhyiddin pairing.
He urged Abdullah to consider their feelings and not insist that they follow blindly the 2010 transition plan.
Meanwhile, Penang and Kelantan division chiefs were among the first to rally behind Abdullah after news leaked he had been humiliated during last week’s supreme council meeting.
During that meeting, leaders aligned to the Mahathir camp, including party senior vice-president Muhyiddin, Wanita chief Rafidah, Youth chief Hishammuddin, were said to have demanded his resignation.
In Selangor, 20 out of 22 divisions are also reported to be dead-set against Abdullah’s transition plan, while in Perak, Terengganu and Federal Territory, the signals are mixed.
In Perak, up to 10 divisions are said to be keen on an early change in leadership, while another 14 divisions are still waffling, according to latest news reports.
Sources from Abdullah’s inner circle have however claimed they are confident of getting at least 70 nominations. The prime minister met the Selangor Umno liasion committee in Tanjong Karang yesterday.
But sources said the party president failed to get the iron-clad commitment he sought from Selangor.
All eyes on Najib
Meanwhile, Najib has maintained a diplomatic silence, despite assuming with gusto his new appointment as finance minister.
The 55-year-old son of the country’s second premier, Abdul Razak, had earlier this month backtracked from his promise to stick by Abdullah’s timeline and all eyes are now on him to make clear his latest stand.
Just a day ago, Najib cancelled an important trip to New York on the grounds that he needed to focus on his duties in the Finance Ministry.
But while he is scheduled to hold a press conference later today, rumours are rife that he is actually staying back to attend an emergency supreme council meeting that Abdullah’s detractors are trying to convene later this week.
“Pak Lah is under renewed pressure to make a gracious exit before Oct 13 at the very latest.
"Both Najib and Muhyiddin are now confident of getting enough nominations for president and deputy president, leaving Pak Lah out in the cold,” the party insider said.

tunku : i don't think najib has the gut to fight, he will just sit down and wait till 2010. it's up to umno members to decide now, which leader they want. the future of umno its in the members hand, it should not be the leader who decide for them.they should be smart enough to assess the current political situation in the country.they should know the consequences of their decision.

Big ‘aye’ for transition plan

PETALING JAYA: State Umno leaders held a meeting that went on until the wee hours of yesterday morning at the Prime Minister’s residence -- and came out in support of the party’s 2010 transition plan.
They were concerned that statements by Umno leaders to leave the transition plan in the hands of delegates attending the division meetings next month had resulted in confusion among party members.
The Prime Minister’s political secretary Datuk Alwi Che Ahmad said the chiefs supported the transition plan which was “very clear that Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi will be number one and Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak the number two”.
Alwi, who is also Kok Lanas assemblyman, said those at the meeting wanted the Umno leadership to clear the air before the divisions start to meet from Oct 9.
All state party chiefs were present except for Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Ghani Othman who had a prior engagement and Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman who could not make it in time. Terengganu’s Datuk Ahmad Said was also not present.
The meeting started at about 1am on Tuesday, because Abdullah returned late after a day-long visit to Kelantan on Monday. It ended shortly before 3am.

tunku : i thought during ramadhan we perform more prayers during the night but at sri perdana they perform more politicking during the night. all the apple polishers,newly appointed advisers,those who owe their positions to the boss, or who benefited from contracts are all performing special politicking during ramadhan month at sri perdana till wonder najib cancel his trip to new york, not enough for alwi che mad, what you expect from the pm political adviser.i just can't forget how happy he was when he organize the meeting between pak lah and ezam at the parliament few months ago when ezam was given red carpet welcome.

Inflation jumps to 27-year high

The inflation rate has jumped to a 27-year high of 8.5 percent in August, driven by the escalating cost of food and fuel, according to official data released today.
"The result was slightly higher than expected but the central Bank Negara would not raise interest rates to ensure growth," said Wan Suhaimi Saidi, an economist with Kenanga Investment Bank.
"It is slightly above my expectation. I was looking at 8.4 percent. I don't think the government will increase the key interest rates. It will be maintained at 3.50 percent till the year-end to support growth," he told AFP.
The Department of Statistics revised downwards the inflation figure for July to 8.3 percent. It had earlier stated that the figure was 8.5 percent.
It said the cost of food and non-alcoholic drinks rose 11.7 percent in August compared to a year ago. The high inflation is already hurting consumers with many Malaysians cutting down on their food bill.
"The increase (in inflation for August) was shown in the selected main groups, namely food and non-alcoholic," it said in a statement.
Escalating food, transport prices
The August data showed escalating prices in most categories, including transport which jumped 21.8 percent, and restaurants and hotels which rose 6.5 percent.
The government hiked the fuel price by 41 percent in June, in a move to rein in the ballooning cost of subsidies but it has indicated prices could be lowered soon.
High inflation was one of the factors that led to an unprecedented humiliation at March general elections for the ruling coalition, which lost five states and a third of parliamentary seats.
Bank Negara has said it expects inflation to moderate in the second half of 2008 as economic growth is likely to slow down.

tunku : i thought najib said a couple of days ago that the inflation rate is going down or he was misinformed by his new ministry.

Murugiah's Action Not Right - Syed Hamid

PUTRAJAYA, 24 Sept (Bernama) -- It is inappropriate of Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department T. Murugiah to interfere in the affairs of another ministry, said Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar.
The home minister said Murugiah's action -- in speaking on behalf of Seputeh member of parliament Teresa Kok on complaints she was not served proper meals while in detention under the Internal Security Act -- was akin to being a spokesman for the opposition.
"What he has done is not right. I hope he knows how to look after his own turf. He should not interfere in another's affairs... that is not his work.
"If there is a problem, he should take the matter to the prime minister," he told reporters after a breaking of fast with staff of the Immigration Department and orphans here Wednesday.
On Monday, Murugiah met Kok over her claims that while in detention, she was served meals which comprised just two boiled eggs, cucumber and gravy.

tunku : first time as deputy minister i guess, trying to show some colours, but we hope he will show at the right place not at where he shouldn't.nowadays no one seem to respect the pm,wonder why? one thing for sure teresa kok did say the food is similar to dog food which she denied after that, she is a liar too.

Rais wants contest for Umno's top 2 posts

The two top positions in Umno must be contested in order to strengthen the party's democratic process, said Umno supreme council and Foreign Minister Dr Rais Yatim.
"Umno is in dire need of a strong democratic process and I belong to that group where the (positions) of the president and the deputy president should be challenged," he said.
Rais told this to Bernama after chairing a meeting of 13 heads of Malaysian missions in the Americas at the Malaysian Embassy in Washington.
"Any office should be subject to contests - public office should not be sacrosanct - Umno should go through a process of reversion," back to the way it was," he said.
Contest for the party's top two positions became off-limits following the 1987 battle for presidency between the then incumbent Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
Tengku Razaleigh subsequently formed Semangat 46 and took several key Umno members with him, including Rais. However, the duo have since returned to Umno.
Meanwhile, Rais, who said that he intended to contest for the post of vice-president at the party's general assembly in December, added that this "process of reversion" within Umno was healthy for the party.
If decisions were made by leaders only, some repercussions were bound to happen but "if grassroots were given the opportunity, then democratic values could be enhanced," said the Jelebu MP
He was, however, confident that Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his deputy Najib Abdul Razak, could weather the "rough spot" in the country's political storm.

tunku : everyone wants contest for all the posts, only pak lah and his group don't want it and trying their best not to let any contest for the top 2 posts.they think they are going in the right direction but they will certainly know it later but then its too late for them.pak lah should be brave enough to be challenge , after all he says he has the backing from the majority of divisions.he should call for mt meeting and get rid of the quota system asap.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Petrol, Diesel Down 10 Sen

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 24 (Bernama) -- The price of petrol and diesel will be reduced by 10 sen to RM2.45 and RM2.40 per litre respectively beginning Thursday, according to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Wednesday.
He said the retail price of RON92 petrol will also be reduced from RM2.40 to RM2.30 per litre.
Abdullah disclosed this in a media statement read by Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad, here.
Abdullah said the new price adjustments took into consideration the actual petrol price between Sept 1 and 22.
He said although the world oil price had dropped slightly, the value of the ringgit against the United States (US) dollar had also weakened resulting in the 10 sen reduction being the maximum that the government could give.
Abdullah said the decision on the fuel price reduction was made today as the Cabinet meeting this morning was the last one for September and it was also to usher in the Hari Raya Puasa which is expected on Wednesday.
"The government is also aware that the public will be making their journey to their hometown to celebrate the Hari Raya at the end of the week.
"Thus, the government hopes the price reduction would ease the burden of the people, especially in celebrating the Aidilfitri," he said.
The price reduction is the second after the last reduction on Aug 23.
In the reduction earlier, the retail price of RON97 petrol was reduced by 15 sen from RM2.70 to RM2.55 per litre while RON92 was reduced by 22 sen from RM2.62 to RM2.40 per litre. The diesel price was reduced by 8 sen from RM2.58 to RM2.50 per litre.
Meanwhile, Shahrir said that according to the average price for fuel for the period, the government could actually reduce the price by seven sen only.
However, he said the government had given a subsidy of three sen per litre to enable the people to enjoy a price reduction of 10 sen per litre beginning tomorrow to ease their burden.
On top of the three sen, the government had given a subsidy of 30 sen for every litre OF petrol sold in the country since last June, he said.
Shahrir said he did not foresee the possibility of the fuel supply being affected as the reduction did not cause any loss to traders, except for a little reduction in their profit margin.

tunku : we were hoping for at least 15 cents but 10 cents is better than nothing.

Anwar drops deadline for govt takeover

KUALA LUMPUR: After a couple of false starts, Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has now ceased to set a deadline for Pakatan Rakyat to take over the government.
“It is not an issue of deadlines anymore. Who could have anticipated that the Prime Minister would refuse to hold an emergency Parliament session when we already have the numbers?” he told reporters at the Jalan Duta court complex on Wednesday after the hearing of his sodomy case.
He claimed this was the first time in the history of a democratic country that a Prime Minister has refused to see an opposition leader.
On Sept 15 at a rally, Anwar claimed the Opposition alliance was on track to take over the government the next day on Sept 16, which Pakatan leaders and supporters had dubbed “916.”
He had said that he had a sufficient number of Members of Parliament (MPs) willing to cross over to the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition, and would be releasing a list of names.
However, at a press conference on Sept 16 itself, Anwar said he would try and meet Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to discuss a peaceful transition of power.
Abdullah declined to meet him, which then led Anwar to ask for an emergency session of Parliament to move a vote of no-confidence against the Prime Minister.
Abdullah again refused to do so. Pakatan leaders now say they would seek an audience with the Yang DiPertuan Agung.

tunku : HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. i can only laugh at the joke by a master joker.i feel pity to those people who believes what the joker says.