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Umno Youth leader warns of grassroots defection to PN
Published on: Saturday, June 03, 2023
By: FMT, Elill Easwaran
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Umno Youth leader warns of grassroots defection to PN
Wan Agyl Wan Hassan says members who are loyal to former leaders who have quit or were sacked by the party may lodge a protest vote at the state elections.
PETALING JAYA: An Umno leader has warned that the party risks losing its grassroots support to Perikatan Nasional (PN) if it cannot explain the “paradigm shift” in its choice of allies.

Umno Youth permanent chairman Wan Agyl Wan Hassan said many grassroots members were still loyal to former leaders who have either quit or were sacked by the party.

“These people are not really loyal to the party but to certain individuals, hence, they would follow them (out of Umno).

“So, taking that as a benchmark along with the situation the party is facing with the DAP issue there will be a significant number of grassroots (switching) support to Perikatan Nasional,” he told FMT.

Wan Agyl was referring to recent calls by party leaders for grassroots members to vote for candidates of parties in the unity coalition, including DAP, during the upcoming state elections.

“That statement will drive people away to the party that they believe is fighting for the right thing, especially protecting Malay interests.

Wan Agyl Wan Hassan.

“Umno used to be that (party) and still is, it is just that the dynamic has changed, the foes have become friends.”

Wan Agyl said the party must help the grassroots understand the reasons behind the change.

A failure to do so would push Umno grassroots to vote for PN either in protest or because they truly believe in the opposition coalition, he said.

Meanwhile, one Umno grassroots leader who declined to be named, said some members within his circle have voiced their intention to boycott the party in the state elections.

“We are still Umno members but we just don’t see (the) point in helping the party (secure) seats as it has lost its principles.

The leader said he did not want to quit the party yet as he still believes Umno can get back on track in its struggle for the Malays. The party’s biggest problem now is its leadership, he said.

He said many grassroots members believe that certain top party leaders “are doing whatever it takes to save themselves” instead of doing what is best for the party.

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