Najib: My ‘baggage’ not for Umno to bear

Azril Annuar
Datuk Seri Najib Razak speaks to reporters at Parliament in Kuala Lumpur August 7, 2018. ― Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 9 — Under fire former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has blasted critics within his own party, saying he has no plans on returning as president and the party does not need to come to his defence.

He claimed that due to his position as ousted prime minister and Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman, he has become the target of multiple attacks and slander.

“Umno doesn’t need to defend me from slander. Through a fair trial I am confident of defending myself. I am confident I am innocent of all the accusations laid out against me. My only mistake was trying to do the best for the people, the country and my party.

“All the accusations and slander are levelled at me and not Umno. It is not fair for Umno to shoulder this burden,” he said in a Facebook post tonight.

Three of Umno’s senior leaders have trained their guns at Najib, partially blaming him for the party’s loss at the Sungai Kandis by-election, with division chief Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani questioning Najib’s presence during campaigning.

Party’s secretary-general Tan Sri Annuar Musa has even reportedly dubbed Najib a “baggage”, but then later met Najib personally to explain reports which he said had misquoted him.

Additionally, vice-president Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said the party must now move on from Najib, adding that it must acknowledge the corruption and feudal culture that the previous party leadership had inculcated under Najib’s leadership.

Najib said today that he was campaigning in Sungai Kandis only due to a personal request from eventual loser Datuk Lokman Noor Adam.

“I only helped Lokman Adam to fulfil his wish when he request my assistance to help his campaign at the Sungai Kandis by-election. It was a heavy burden for this seat because PRK is the incumbent and won with a huge majority a few months ago.

“Lokman and his team did their best for the by-election,” the Pekan MP said.

Najib said he would still be a party member and reminded everyone that he is still a division chief and an MP, and has the necessary experience and knowledge of what is going on in the government.

Najib also said he still has the freedom of speech to speak out on any issues in the country, including to defend himself from any allegations or accusations against him.