Kit Siang insists Najib is de facto Umno leader

Justin Ong
DAP’s Lim Kit Siang says that only Najib (pic) would want either Tan Sri Apandi Ali or Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia within the ranks of the party’s leadership. ― Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

KUALA LUMPUR, July 17 — Umno’s offer for Tan Sri Apandi Ali and Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia to be supreme council members show that Datuk Seri Najib Razak remained firmly in control of the party, claimed DAP’s Lim Kit Siang.

The Iskandar Puteri MP insisted that only Najib would want either the former attorney-general (AG) or the ex-Speaker of Parliament within the ranks of the party’s leadership.

“I believe that if the Umno president, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi, had a choice, he would have kept a great distance from both Apandi and Pandikar.

“But Najib is the de facto Umno president, and Zahid, although the Umno president, has to do Najib’s bidding,” Lim purported in a statement today.

Apandi initially accepted the offer for the Umno supreme council post last week, but declined later by saying it would be linked to his previous service as a senior judge and the attorney-general.

He is coincidentally the AG who initially cleared Najib of any wrongdoing related to 1MDB.

The former PM has since been charged over the transfer of RM42 million from a former 1MDB subsidiary.

Pandikar was appointed to the Umno supreme council later, believed to be as a replacement for Apandi.

Lim also repeated today his assertion that Najib continues to hold sway in Umno by virtue of his seating position in Parliament next to Opposition Leader Zahid.