UMNO Youth should have been more active in the run-up to the recently-concluded state polls and not speak out just when the party has suffered losses, said an analyst.
An FMT report has quoted political analyst Associate Professor Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi of Universiti Malaya as saying that UMNO Youth had been passive during the campaigns leading up to the Aug 12 state polls.
He claimed that the part’s divisional machinery did not approach voters while some party leaders who previously held posts had campaigned only half-heartedly.
“Now when they no longer have power, they don’t seem to be helping the party much. But when the party loses, they are the first ones to pressure the leadership with various demands,” he was reported as saying to the news portal.
Awang Azman was referring to UMNO Youth chief Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh’s warning to top party leaders that his wing will take more aggressive action if their voices were ignored and if “nothing changes”.
In a speech addressing over 1,000 Umno Youth members at the International Youth Centre in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday (Aug 17), Akmal further warned that if the party remained passive, UMNO would be “buried” in the next general election.
UMNO won only 19 of the 108 seats in the six states that it contested on Aug 12.
Concurring with Awang Azman on the matter, National Council of Professors senior fellow Datuk Dr Jeniri Amir further noted that changes were necessary in UMNO, and that the outcome of the recent state polls were a “final warning” to the party.
According to Jeniri, UMNO had failed to attract Malay voters even though they are supposed to be the ones fighting for the Malays.
He further stressed that UMNO needs new leaders to take over, more specifically, ones who are committed to reform the party and put the embattled party back on the right track.
Jeniri said younger Malays wanted to see new leaders at the helm; however, he does not believe that UMNO president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi would make way for younger leaders.
“The change of leadership is needed at all levels. But are they willing to do that?” he was quoted as saying by the news portal. – Aug 21, 2023
Main pic credit: SCMP