Yesterday the New Straits Times (NST) article has it title screaming or perhaps wailing "UMNO urged to defend Pak Lah"..
"... urged to defend ..."?
The article had Entrepreneur and Co-operative Development Minister Mohd Khaled Nordin pronouncing that:
"Pak Lah is not a weak leader. All the decisions he announced were made collectively by the Cabinet members. If (Tun) Dr Mahathir (Mohamad) thought he could use Pak Lah as his proxy to continue his legacy, then he is wrong."
"Pak Lah is not a weak leader ..."?
The very fact that Khaled had to raise this denial means that the already well-known perception of AAB is becoming far too worrying, especially within UMNO, bearing in mind that the message has been meant for the UMNO supreme council.
Khaled then argued that unlike opinionated Dr Mahathir: "Pak Lah listens. He has a responsibility to develop the economy. That’s why he cancelled some of the projects decided during Tun’s tenure. He is a successor to Dr Mahathir, not a proxy to him. I don’t think the people want to have a proxy prime minister. They want a real PM."
Looks like Khaled is still trying to 'sell' AAB as the leader of UMNO. This means that there is fear of Dr Mahathir succeeding in his anti-AAB campaign.
Khaled then reminded us that AAB gained his mandate from the people and he did not have to listen to Dr Mahathir. Yet another 'sell' of AAB by Khaled!
"If Dr Mahathir wished to continue his legacy, he should have asked to become a Minister Mentor like Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew. But since he chose to retire, he should not keep on repeating the same accusations against the party and the government. He wanted to be heard. He was heard. What more does he want?”
A plaintive complaint and then unbelievably, the UMNO bloke said:
"He is now worse than Lee Kuan Yew. At least Lee openly shows that he wants a say in the future development of Singapore. What is Dr Mahathir’s motive? Nobody knows except him."
I can't believe that an UMNO person would place LKY above any UMNO leader, but I suppose times must be truly f**ked for UMNO.
Khaled wants the UMNO supreme council to bring matters regarding Dr Mahathir to a head, probably to sack or at least threaten the Grand Ole Man with expulsion from UMNO.
He demanded (was it hysterically?): "The party must make a stand because Dr Mahathir’s attacks are on the party and the government. The Umno supreme council should tell Dr Mahathir that he is wrong and be ready to defend Pak Lah against him.”
That 'defend' word again!
... but this time addressed directly to the UMNO supreme council. Does this mean that not all UMNO supreme council members have been doing so, that is, supporting AAB?
Khaled added, attempting to place his appeal on a slightly higher (party) plane: "He is openly opposing the party and the government, not Pak Lah himself. It is unfair to see it as a Pak Lah versus Mahathir feud."
And a wee bit on national interest just in case anyone thinks it’s all about AAB:
"The people want the leaders to concentrate on developing the economy instead of being constantly disrupted by the former prime minister. If he continues doing this, at the end of it, the people will suffer."
KTemoc reckons that such a message, with such a desperate plaintive-appealing NST heading for the news article, all don’t brood well for AAB's position. His authority and status in UMNO are not as solid as he ought to be enjoying as president and prime minister.