Zahid is 'Thanos', wants to show he is charge in Cabinet reshuffle - KJ

16 Dec 2023 10:33am
Khairy Jamaluddin in the Keluar Sekejap podcast
Khairy Jamaluddin in the Keluar Sekejap podcast

SHAH ALAM - Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi wants to show he is ‘in charge’ in the recent Cabinet reshuffle announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim which saw changes in the portfolios of several ministers from the party.

In his recent 'Keluar Sekejap' podcast, former Umno youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin said Zahid perceived the Cabinet reshuffle as a chance to show his power, despite his health issues.

He also labelled the Deputy Prime Minister as ‘Thanos’, the supervillain in American comic books published by Marvel Comics.

"Zahid being the consummate political operator that he is, when he heard that PM (Anwar) will announce a Cabinet reshuffle, he must have thought to himself that this was his chance to tell people that although he had just undergone surgery, he was still in charge, he is not going anywhere and that he can move people around.

"(Zahid might think) whether you are the vice-president, deputy president, you are uncomfortable, you will be moved around.

"The most constant is me (Zahid)... Thanos. As for the others, the deputy president who became defence minister, I've now thrown you to the Foreign Ministry

"You are vice-president who used to handle the Higher Education Ministry (referring to Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin), I send you to oversee the military, a place where you have no experience in... keep people on their toes.

"So I thought it was again another political masterclass from Zahid,” Khairy said in the podcast with former Umno information chief Shahril Hamdan, which was aired yesterday.

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On the change of Umno deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan’s portfolio from the Defence Minister to Foreign Minister, Khairy said it was seen as a demotion.

He said although the Foreign Ministry was considered a prominent position, it would not give Mohamad the political advantages since he would be away most of the time.

In relation to this, Khairy also shared his conversation with his father-in-law former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi who was also the foreign minister for nine years.

He said Abdullah or fondly known Pak Lah acknowledged that although being a foreign minister did not prevent him from becoming the prime minister, the position had made his political journey challenging because he did not have much time in Malaysia and did not have time to have touch point with the public and political community.

“At least the Defence Minister can meet the family of the army and party’s division chiefs.

“If you are the Foreign Minister who are you going to meet? the Umno Zimbabwe division chief? Foreign Umno club?,” he said jokingly.