Large scale purge in Umno tonight? Will rivals create chaos if KJ, 'saboteurs' sacked?

26 Jan 2023 08:30am
Former Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin
Former Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin

SHAH ALAM - Tonight seems like the D-day for former Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin as Umno supreme council members discuss his fate and the fate of several "saboteurs".

The aim of the sitting is to purge the party of its rivals.

But will this create chaos or will this move ensure rivals toe the line?

As for now, National Council of Professors senior fellow Prof Datuk Dr Jeniri Amir said be ready for some protest if Khairy or other party leaders are booted out from the party.

"Their followers will protest and quit the party which is not good for Umno and it will weaken the party," he told Sinar Daily.

Jeniri predicts Khairy may be shown the exit door "perhaps suspend him for a year and with a stern warning not to repeat the same action."

"He is a well-known figure in country, in a way an asset to Umno. A chance should have been given for Khairy to turn into a new leaf. Firing him may not be the best option," he added.

The move to suspend Khairy may also be seen as vindictive and done on purpose to stop him from competing with Umno president, he said.

"Bear in mind, Khairy is very popular not only within the party, but outside the party too," he said. Khairy was also the health minister under Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob's administration.

Commenting further, Universiti Putra Malaysia political analyst Datuk Prof Dr Jayum said Umno will have to rebuild the party with what they have left.

"Khairy and Datuk Seri Hishamudidn Hussein as well as others have not been seen as forthcoming to take charge to revive the party.

"They are waiting to be handed the role as if Umno owes them that privileges.

"Without big names such as Hishamudin and KJ to provide materials for future leaedership, Umno is seriously suffering from a renewal process," he said.

When asked on what might happen if Khairy is booted out from the party, Jayum said his chances are not that great if he choose to stay.

"If Khairy is booted out, then his struglle within Umno ends. If he stays, his chance are not great.

"Without resources, it would not be easy to pull support despite the fact that he was seen as a potential leadeship material in Umno," he said.

Meanwhile Professor Dr Sivamurugan Pandian said Umno must prepare itself to face various criticism if Khairy is kicked out of Umno as the move may be seen an "undemocratic."

"Whatever decision regardless to retain or to remove the rivals, it should be studied throughly to make sure it does not have an impact in long run to the party leadership," he added.

However, Sivamurugan said tt would depend on the Disciplinary Board as they have to decide base on evidence and to avoid emotional decision to maintain neutrality.

Zahid also said the meeting tonight was part of a large-scale purge within the party as decided in the last Umno General Assembly.

During the recent Umno general assembly, Zahid was reported to have assured that he would carry out a thorough clean up so that Umno would be uplifted again.

Among the names mentioned to be involved in the cleanup is Khairy after the Deputy President Datuk Seri Mohamad Hassan confirmed the membership status of the former Health Minister will be determined in the MKT meeting.

Khairy previously criticised the party after the top two party posts were not contested.

He described it as "madness" and an attempt to stifle democracy.