Monday, September 27

Khairy denies under pressure to quit

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KUALA LUMPUR: Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin has quashed rumours that the Umno Youth exco will mimic the MCA faction led by Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai to resign en bloc and press for a fresh election.

Khairy Jamaluddin

Khairy Jamaluddin

He said the rumours were the work of bloggers who had their own political agenda and were not satisfied with him. He said he had the tape recording of the Umno Youth exco meeting on Jan 28.

“There is no such thing. The truth is an exco member challenged all members to do their jobs, or else it would be better if we all resign from our posts,” he said.

Khairy stressed that the intention of the member was to urge fellow members to complete their tasks, and the member was not targeting him.

“If you do not believe me, I have a tape recording that can prove the situation in the meeting. My vice-chief Datuk Razali has denied this issue, Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein has also issued a statement regarding this issue,” he said. “If I am really forced to step down, why should I hide it? What benefit does it bring?”

In an interview with the Oriental Daily News recently, Khairy said all Umno Youth exco members agreed to raise their work performance, and he was optimistic on the improvements that could be made.

Asked if he felt he was being pressured to resign, Khairy said: “What is there to be afraid of? I understand the challenges a leader faces.”

He went on to stressed that none of the members had handed in their resignation to date.

“I know the situation. I am not an ignorant leader; I just want to focus on my aims and plans,” he said.

Khairy also dismissed the suggestion that winning a 52-vote majority in the Umno Youth election last year could be a problem for him in propelling the movement forward.

Khairy also dismissed the suggestion that winning a 52-vote majority in the Umno Youth election last year could be a problem for him in propelling the movement forward, saying: “We must admit that there will be this kind of discussion after the election, but our focus is to ensure the initial plans are executed on schedule.”

On March 25 last year, Khairy won the Umno Youth election with 304 votes, while his rivals Datuk Seri Khir Toyo, who is former Selangor Menteri Besar, and Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, who is Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister, obtained 252 votes and 232 votes respectively. In other words, Khairy only obtained 38.57 per cent of the total votes compared to a combined 61.42 per cent obtained by Khir and Mukhriz.

When Khairy was declared as the new Umno Youth chief, the election venue was said to be in chaos and police had to be called to restore order.

It was reported in the media that Umno blog had revealed several Umno Youth exco members publicly criticising the leadership of Khairy and asking him to resign, as he could not keep up with the pace of Prime Minister cum Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

A blogger even claimed that more than two thirds of the exco were prepared to hand in their resignations so that a fresh election could be held. — Bernama