KUALA LUMPUR – The reconciliatory mood at the close of the Umno general assembly may be short-lived as Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is believed to be planning another political ceramah to air his views.
The Umno deputy president, said a source close to him, was preparing to defend himself on the issues raised during the general assembly.
According to the source, MuhÂyiddin wanted to rebut what Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said in his presidential address as well as during the winding-up speech.
The former deputy prime minister also wanted to respond to attacks and criticism by some of the delegates who spoke during the debate.
It is unclear at this point whether the new programme would be staged at the Sultan Sulaiman Club in Kampung Baru again or closer to his home base in Johor.
Muhyiddin, former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal joined forces at the Kampung Baru event, held just days before the general assembly to criticise Najibâ€™s handling of the 1MDB issue and other government policies.
The next ceramah would be presented as the â€œwinding-up speechâ€ that MuhÂyiddin was not allowed to make during the party gathering.
â€œHe feels that he needs to reply to the allegations about his leadership and performance as the party No.2,â€ said the source.
Najib had held out an olive branch to his estranged deputy on the final day of the general assembly when he declared that he wished to be magnanimous about all that had happened.
But Muhyiddin, judging by his body language, looked unmoved. The two men shook hands but did not embrace, although some of the delegates had called out to them to peluk (hug).
Those standing nearby noticed that the handshake looked half-Âhearted â€“ only their fingertips touched â€“ and when Najib tried to raise their hands in the air, Muhyiddin refused to yield.
It appears that Muhyiddin has not accepted the â€œolive branchâ€ held out by Najib.
â€œThere was a branch but where is the olive?â€ asked the Muhyiddin source.
It is understood that Muhyiddin did not take well to Najibâ€™s statement that â€œwhoever goes against the president also goes against the partyâ€.
Moreover, he had posted a terse account on his Facebook barely hours after Najibâ€™s opening speech, which had implied that Muhyiddin had not performed his duties as the No.2.
Muhyiddin wrote that he had diligently led one by-election after another since 2009.
He had also fired back by saying that his criticism of the leadership was based on complaints from the ground.
Kapar Umno division chief Datuk Faizal Abdullah said the delegates had made it clear that they wanted the party to move on and prepare to face the next general election.
â€œAlmost every speaker expressed the wish for the fighting and disagreements to end.
â€œI donâ€™t know what else to say but if Muhyiddin insists on taking the issues outside, he is not respecting what the delegates want.
â€œThe president had sent him a clear signal that if there are disagreements, he (Muhyiddin) can go and see him or raise it with the supreme council,â€ added Faizal.
Muhyiddin could be courting disciplinary action if he proceeds to take his grievances public.
He had come close to being sacked at the last Umno supreme council meeting on Wednesday night when one of the supreme council members listed down â€œeight reasonsâ€ why the deputy president should be kicked out.
However, Najib was reluctant to move against his deputy and quickly ended the meeting, even though several others wanted to speak. – MyNewsHub/The Star