400 Umno branch chiefs may quit

Gabungan Ketua Cawangan Umno Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: With former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s resignation, Umno can expect hundreds more to follow in his footsteps.

This warning came from Umno rebels, comprising more than 400 branch chiefs calling themselves the Coalition of Branch Chiefs Malaysia (GKCM).

The group said they would meet for an emergency meeting tonight to decide if they should also leave the ruling party.

“GKCM’s position will be decided tonight – a decision on whether GKCM will continue our fight under the Umno platform or leave the party completely,” said the group’s deputy president, Rushdan Mohamed, at a press conference at Perdana Leadership Foundation here today.

His statement came following Dr Mahathir’s announcement today on his resignation, stating that Umno was now a Najib-centric party.

“I decided to leave Umno as it is no longer Umno. It is now a party which is dedicated to supporting Najib, protecting Najib and I cannot be a member of such a party,” Dr Mahathir had said.

GKCM said its rapidly growing numbers would allow them to contest in the next general election as a separate and independent party if a decision was made to do this.

Former Batu Kawan Umno vice-chief Khairuddin Abu Hassan also quit the party not long after Mahathir announced his decision to leave Umno.