FORMER Selangor UMNO chief Tan Sri Noh Omar has lamented UMNO’s “sorry state”, saying that the party would have fared better had it not sided with Pakatan Harapan (PH).
The ex-Barisan Nasional (BN) Selangor chief, who confirmed in April that he would contest a Selangor state seat as a Perikatan Nasional (PN) candidate, said had UMNO joined PN and the coalition wins Selangor, the party would have gotten the menteri besar post.
“PN is good. If we (PN and UMNO) were to share the seats in Selangor, UMNO would have gotten at least 20, and then some for Bersatu and PAS,” Noh said during the launch of Sungai Burong and Permatang PN election machinery in Tanjong Karang last night (July 23).
“And in the event that we win Selangor, surely UMNO would get the menteri besar post, because UMNO has 20 seats.
“But alas, UMNO is in such a sorry state today that it could only get 12 to contest. UMNO is no longer a party the Malays can depend on.”
The former Tanjong Karang MP was referring to the seat distribution in Selangor between UMNO and its ally PH; while UMNO was allocated 12 seats to contest in the state polls, PH got 44.
Selangor has 56 state seats, of which UMNO only won four in the 2018 general election: Sungai Air Tawar, Sungai Panjang, Hulu Bernam, and Sungai Burong.
In January, UMNO suspended Noh for six years amid claims that he had sabotaged the party; however, Noh had asked to be kicked out instead, and had since joined the Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin-led PN.
In his speech last night, Noh went on to slam the UMNO leadership for surrendering its Hulu Bernam seat in Selangor to PH, saying Hulu Bernam is an UMNO stronghold and that the party has never been defeated there.
Blaming Zahid for “sinking his own ship”, Noh went on to question: “How could UMNO give the seat to [PH]? Where is UMNO’s dignity?
“You see DAP, when PH decided to give its Dusun Tua seat to UMNO, DAP secretary-general Anthony Loke immediately complained. So why is UMNO keeping quiet?”
UMNO and PAS, the two largest Malay-based parties, had formed Muafakat Nasional (MN) in September 2019 as an electoral pact to unite the Malay-Muslim vote.
However, ties between both parties became increasingly strained after PAS had joined Bersatu to form PN when Muhyiddin was the prime minister.
BN’s dismal performance during the 15th general election, dubbed the worst in the party’s history, had prompted UMNO and BN to form a unity government with PH under the leadership of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. – July 24, 2023
Main pic credit: Harian Metro