KUALA LUMPUR, 11 March 2009: Umno vice-president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said people want real change in the party and no longer want to hear that the party will change.
“It is important to show Umno is ready to change and overcome weaknesses that may exist. The people are not interested to hear Umno will change, they want to see real changes,” he said.
Muhyiddin, who is contesting for the party’s deputy presidency in polls at the end of this month, said this last night on the Dialog@1 talk show aired by TV1.
The talk was entitled Global Economic Crisis: Miti’s Challenges and Hopes.
Muhyiddin, who is also International Trade and Industry Minister, said Umno must be ready to go to the ground, be people-friendly and undertake many more programmes that were beneficial to the people.
He added that the political scenario had changed and the younger generation of voters were very demanding.
“They are not like voters of before, so the decisions and actions we take will ultimately determine our fate,” he said.
Muhyiddin noted that Umno’s 63rd general assembly at the end of this month is the focus of everyone’s attention because it involves the power transition between Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his deputy, Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Muhyiddin said the matter of power transition would be considered settled when Najib took over the mantle.
“Other contests like for the deputy president’s post are also deemed very important especially in the current political and economic scenario.
“We can say Umno is faced with challenges and so too the Barisan Nasional in terms of the people’s perception following the outcome of the last general election,” he said.
He also said besides the power transition, the people wanted to know how Malaysia could ride the economic crisis, the worst the world has faced since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
“We do not want too much politicking, economic issues are of the utmost priority to ensure Malaysians can have a better life,” he said.
Muhyiddin said whoever was elected to fill leadership positions in Umno in the party’s polls during the general assembly must be able to solve the challenges the country was facing now.
Asked whether allegations of rampant money politics in Umno portrayed a negative image of the party, he said many people felt this but not all candidates were involved. — Bernama