KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 8 — In a unanimous vote, Umno decided to disallow contests for the party’s two top positions at its next internal elections, effectively keeping Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi as president and deputy president respectively.
The motion to ensure the top two positions are uncontested in the next party polls was proposed by the Youth wing and tabled at Umno’s 71st general assembly at the Putra World Trade Centre here today.
Ahmad Zahid is currently acting deputy president but will be formally hold the post if he is nominated at the party election next year.
Umno has delayed its party elections to the end of 2018, to take place after the 14th general elections which also due by August next year.
Umno permanent chairman Tan Sri Badruddin Amiruldin raised the motion during the assembly today, before the delegates unanimously voted in favour.
Several delegates throughout the debates also proposed similar motions to provide Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein safe passage to retain his vice-presidency.
Though this was not part of the motion adopted, Ahmad Zahid told a press conference later that the party leadership agreed to accept Hishammuddin as a senior vice-president and solidify his position.
“Even though the vice-president posts are normally filled by three individuals, the post (currently) only has one incumbent, so the senior VP position should be given to Hishammuddin,” he added.
Ahmad Zahid is technically the other remaining vice-president, after he won the spot by securing the most votes in the previous Umno election.
The third opening has been vacant since Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal resigned from the party following his suspension for criticising the leadership.