PETALING JAYA: There’s speculation that a few Umno leaders, including its president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, have met PPBM chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad to discuss a potential merger.
Veteran newsman A Kadir Jasin, who said this in his blog post today, said the story from the grapevine was that they were looking at the possibility of forming a pact called Pekembar Bersatu.
Kadir said that from there, they hoped to become part of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government.
“The story is that they are no longer talking about Umno but Pekembar. Pekembar is the Malay acronym for Umno, that is Pertubuhan Kebangsaan Melayu Bersatu.
“But that is just a story! It does make sense. Don’t tell me that PPBM, which is already part of PH, would want to combine with Umno/Pekembar?
“Of course, PPBM understands Umno’s tricks. This could be Umno’s way of dividing PH, with the hope that it will return to power,” he said in his blog post today.
Kadir said PPBM’s stand was clear in that Umno members were welcome to join the party but they have to do so as individuals and as ordinary members, and not in groups, like branches or divisions.
“If they harbour ambitions to lead, they must do it within the PPBM framework.
“A majority of Umno members are welcome. But, of course, there are a few who will not be accepted because of their bad image and practices that go against the law,” he said.
Kadir said Umno was now struggling to find new partners following its heavy defeat in the May 9 general election.
“Umno is now like a chick that has lost its mother hen — cold, hungry and scared. It’s moving here and there, looking for shelter,” he said.
Kadir, who blogs in his personal capacity, said Umno had already started working closely with PAS, but this appeared to not satisfy them as PAS is also on the losing side.
He said their partnership was not enough to form a unity government at the federal level, and both have already been rejected by the people in the last few by-elections.
“After four months of being in the opposition, Umno finds itself unable to bear such a situation.
“This is because they were too accustomed to power and money, more so in the times when ‘cash is king’. Without power and money, Umno is finding it hard to survive.
“PAS itself does not have the power or the money. Also, word is that state governments led by Umno and PAS cannot afford to pay their government servants, if not for help from the federal government.”
Kadir said Umno would not be in such a terrible state now if it had listened to some of its party members three or four years ago and got rid of former prime minister and party president Najib Razak.
“In fact, there were observers and political analysts who were of the view that if Najib had stepped down prior to GE14, Barisan Nasional would not have lost and PH would have been satisfied with being the opposition.
“But in this manner, Allah has saved our country by not opening Najib’s heart to step down and not giving courage to some Umno leaders to ask him to resign.
“With the defeat of Umno and BN, all the damage to the economy and the national institutions caused by Najib, together with his gang and conspirators, have been exposed,” he said.
Kadir believed that many more Umno leaders from Najib’s era will soon follow in their “boss’s footsteps” and will be brought to face justice in a court of law.
“Indirectly, the process of cleansing Umno is already taking place and this will make it easier for us to differentiate between the diamonds and the glass in the party.
“Those who are clean, or have not committed too grave a crime, can be accepted into PPBM or as an ally of PH in Parliament as well as the state assemblies,” he said, adding that this will enable PH to expose and overcome more scandals and damage done by the past BN administration.