PETALING JAYA: The research director of a think tank believes that Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan is the party’s best hope for Umno and Barisan Nasional against the likes of Anwar Ibrahim at the next general election.
Mohd Yusri Ibrahim of Ilham Centre made this assertion having observed the performance of Mohamad, who is known as Tok Mat, throughout the Umno general assembly which ended this evening.
He said that despite Mohamad’s calibre, the former Negeri Sembilan menteri besar was not an influential Umno warlord.
The three powerful Umno warlords, he said, were party president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, former president Najib Razak and former vice-president Hishammuddin Hussein.
The trio, he added, had a lot of sway among the grassroots and divisional leaders.
“However, if any of the three personalities were to lead Umno and the BN and is named as a potential prime minister candidate, it will make it easy for Pakatan Harapan in the 15th general election.
“To face Anwar of PH, the best candidate for Umno and BN is Tok Mat,” he said in a statement.
He added: “There’s no need to agree with this prediction, just file it for future reference. Let success make its own noise.”
An agreement among Pakatan Harapan leaders calls for Anwar to succeed Dr Mahathir Mohamad as prime minister at an unspecified date after the coalition took power in Putrajaya.
Mohamad was made the party’s acting president when Zahid took leave after being charged with 45 counts of criminal breach of trust, money laundering and corruption.
In an interview with FMT earlier this year, Umno Youth chief Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki credited Mohamad for consolidating the party during Zahid’s absence.