Intense 'implosion' taking place in Umno, says Malaysia ex-deputy PM Musa Hitam

KUALA LUMPUR (The Star/Asia News Network) - There is an intense 'implosion' taking place within Malaysia's ruling party Umno, former deputy Prime Minister Tun Musa Hitam said on Sunday.

The situation is "unhealthy and confusing" and there is an "eerie sense of loss of direction in the country which can be felt across the board", he said.

"The only thing you hear now is one person trying to topple the other. People are losing their sense of purpose (within the party)," the 81-year-old told reporters after being confered an honourary degree by a university in Kuala Lumpur.

He was alluding to the recent attacks by former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

In his acceptance speech, Musa, who served as deputy prime minister under Dr Mahathir between 1981 and 1986, referred to the two leaders as "the past ones who want to be present and the present ones who may fast be past".

He urged them to put aside their politicking and work towards the good of the country.