KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 19 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak is in agreement with Umno leaders to refer party lawmakers in a clandestine meeting with political nemeses last night to their disciplinary committee.
The former Umno president and ex-prime minister on trial for corruption said his party colleagues should have focused on serving the public and being the alternative choice to the ruling Pakatan Harapan (PH) instead of meeting its Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Azmin Ali.
“We should not have been involved. As the Opposition party, our responsibility must focus on the public. We must be seen as a party that gives the alternative narrative for the country.
“On what happened last night, it should be investigated by the disciplinary committee. As announced by the party president, any decision made by the party will be done for the sake of the party’s solidarity and party discipline.
“And any action that we do must be party-based. This is a question of the party. We must have the spirit of the party,” Najib told reporters in Parliament after his trial for allegedly tampering with the 2016 Auditor-General’s Report on the 1Malaysia Development Berhad financial scandal was adjourned.
The Pekan MP said any official meeting should be conducted at the office, instead of Azmin’s residence in the middle of the night.
He said such late night meetings are subject to many interpretations.
He added that any cross-party talks with the government should be handled by the party’s parliamentary whip or the Opposition leader.
Najib’s cousin and Sembrong MP Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein confirmed he was part of a group of Umno men who met with PKR’s Azmin at the latter’s home in Putrajaya late last night after being outed by Umno supreme council member Datuk Lokman Noor Adam who posted about the meeting early this morning.
Hishammuddin, a former Umno vice-president, denied he organised or led the delegation as alleged, and said he is open to any investigation as he has nothing to hide.
Umno disciplinary chairman Tan Sri Apandi Ali confirmed in a statement this morning that the board received several complaints and is investigating the matter.
He promised to take the necessary action without “fear or favour” if any of the 22 were found in breach of the Umno constitution.
It was reported that around 22 MPs from both sides of the political divide were seen to have gathered at the official residence of the economic affairs minister last night.
Apart from Hishammuddin, those who attended the meeting included Barisan Nasional’s Cameron Highlands MP Ramli Mohd Noor, Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin and Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar from PKR.