PETALING JAYA: Umno Youth leader Khairy Jamaluddin today called on his “friends” to join him in rebuilding the party from the ruins of its defeat in the 14th general election.
He said the task must begin immediately.
“We cannot put off (the changes) any longer. Umno’s services to religion, race and country are too huge to allow our sacred party to die and disappear forever,” he said in a message to mark Umno’s 72nd anniversary.
“For sure, this is not the situation I envisioned to celebrate our party’s anniversary, but that is the choice of the people and the determination by Allah.
“What is emphatic is that the people have rejected Barisan Nasional. For the first time in the history of our nation, BN which is anchored by Umno has lost power at the federal level.
“I understand all Umno members feel sad and some are angry over the election outcome.
“As Umno Youth chief, I apologise to Umno members because, as a party leader, I was unable to help the party achieve victory this time.”
Khairy said the task ahead, to rebuild the party, would be very heavy.
He said he wanted to return Umno to its original spirit, when it was not seen as a party isolated from the people, a party for the elite only and did not care for integrity, and a party that was arrogant and haughty.
“I want Umno to go back to be a party for the masses. A party that safeguards the dignity of the Malays and builds prosperity together with other races, a party that is not racist, one that truly fights for all layers of society,” he said.
Khairy said major changes must be made to return Umno to its roots.
“We must make changes that we have never imagined before. What we need now is heartfelt sincerity, extraordinary courage and painful sacrifices.
“For today, maybe we feel dejected. We feel listless, and see no light at the end of the tunnel.
“But if we return to the roots of our true struggle and listen to the voices of the people and our ordinary members who want Umno to change, God willing, one day we will fly again.”