Muhyiddin to stay in Umno and challenge suspension

Mr Muhyiddin said at the press conference yesterday that he is staying on in Umno to help "fix the party" from the inside.
Mr Muhyiddin said at the press conference yesterday that he is staying on in Umno to help "fix the party" from the inside.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

Suspended Umno deputy president Muhyiddin Yassin has said he will remain in the ruling party, dispelling speculation that he might follow former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad who announced he was quitting on Monday.

Tan Sri Muhyiddin also said he would challenge his suspension.

"There has been an issue about whether I'll be in Umno. The answer is, I will stay on in Umno," he told a press conference yesterday.

"I'll stay on to fight the party's evil from within and fix the party from the inside," he said.

Also at the press conference were Umno vice-president Shafie Apdal and former Kedah chief minister Mukhriz Mahathir. Both men also said they would remain in Umno.

Saying that the Umno Supreme Council's decision to suspend him last week could have been in breach of standard operating procedures, Mr Muhyiddin said he would write to the Registry of Societies, which falls under the purview of Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Zahid Hamidi.

Datuk Seri Zahid has also temporarily taken over the role of deputy party president until the next Umno election in 2018.

Dismissing the allegation, Umno secretary-general Tengku Adnan Mansor said in a statement: "In the absence of a general assembly, the Umno Supreme Council is the highest decision-making body."

Mr Muhyiddin was sacked from the Cabinet last July after openly criticising Prime Minister Najib Razak's handling of troubled state investor 1Malaysia Development Berhad.

At Monday's press conference, Dr Mahathir mooted the idea of a "core group" of like-minded individuals to remove Mr Najib. Mr Muhyiddin said yesterday that he would take part in the proposed "core group".

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 04, 2016, with the headline 'Muhyiddin to stay in Umno and challenge suspension'. Print Edition | Subscribe