KUALA LUMPUR, March 19 — The 2021 Umno General Assembly which ended today witnessed its key leaders being united, dispelling the general perception that there was a misunderstanding among them.

Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the party’s top five leaders were always united in making decisions involving party matters and the interests of the people.

Acknowledging that there was ‘chatter’ about friction between party leaders and the government which was also touched upon in the debates of Umno delegates and party wings, he said the allegations proved to be unfounded.

“The focus is on national issues, especially the matter of determining the (dates for the) GE (general election) and also the party election. So the delegates have agreed for the ‘top five’ to hold discussions before it is brought to the Supreme Council for a resolution.

“I am pleased to inform you that the frequency at which the five of us meet is no less than once in a month and a half,” he said during a press conference after the general assembly ended here today.

Also present at the press conference were the party’s deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan and three vice-presidents, namely Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, who is also Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin and Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid.

Ahmad Zahid said, however, if there was an issue involving the party or about the people, meetings would be held more frequently.

He said the closeness and togetherness of Umno’s key leaders could be seen not only in terms of gaining support from the party’s Supreme Council members but the concept of ‘musyawarah’ (deliberation) and having consensus itself was an initiative of the top five leaders, although it was not enshrined in the party’s rules and constitution.

Meanwhile, commenting on whether GE15 would be held before or after this July, Ahmad Zahid said he left it up to the wisdom of the Prime Minister to determine the actual date.

He said Umno respects the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Transformation and Political Stability signed by the Federal Government and Pakatan Harapan (PH) last September which ends in July.

Ahmad Zahid said Umno was only suggesting the matter based on internal and external factors of the party.

“There are push and pull factors, we feel political stability should be re-established in our country, because a party must be the backbone of a government, so the party (Umno) must be dominant,” he said. — Bernama