PETALING JAYA: Putrajaya Umno division deputy chief Tun Faisal Ismail Aziz has questioned the Umno disciplinary board’s decision to suspend his membership for six years, saying others who committed more serious offences were given lower penalties.
Faisal, who is press secretary to federal territories minister Annuar Musa, had been issued a show-cause letter by the party last month for openly criticising party president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi before the suspension was announced yesterday.
The harsh decision has led to speculation linking the suspension to the division’s chief and Umno treasurer Tengku Adnan Mansor who is currently facing court charges.
“Many friends have sent me WhatsApp texts on the six years (suspension), as it is very strange. Some with far more serious offences including money politics got less than six years. The complainant in this case came from my own Umno division,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the Umno general assembly.
Citing “political play at his divisional level” if Tengku Adnan is convicted, he appealed to Umno leaders to review his suspension.
Utusan Online has previously said it was believed there was a movement to stop Faisal from replacing Tengku Adnan as the Putrajaya Umno chief if the latter was convicted of court charges.
Last night, Umno election director Tajuddin Abdul Rahman confirmed with FMT that Faisal had been suspended.
Umno secretary-general Ahmad Maslan had confirmed that one person was suspended by the Supreme Council on a recommendation by the disciplinary board. He did not name the person but said the suspension was for six years.
Today Faisal denied that his previous statements were to tarnish the image of Umno or Zahid. He said his statement was a proposal to enhance the party’s prestige and the position of the president.
“Give me two days to write the appeal letter. The Umno Supreme Council should analyse my arguments and not rely on the disciplinary board,” he said.
Disappointed with the decision, he said the party had never made a decision to dismiss or suspend its members during general assembly.