After UMNO purge, battle for vice-presidency posts heats up in Malaysian politics

According to a report by the New Straits Times (NST) on Wednesday (Feb 1), at least seven candidates will be contesting for the three vice-president spots. 

They include the party’s Supreme Council members Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir, Ms Azalina Othman Said as well as Mr Johari Abdul Ghani.

Dr Zambry is the current foreign affairs minister while Ms Azalina is the current minister of law and institutional reform. 

Others who are believed to be interested in the vice-president posts are incumbent Mr Mohamed Khaled Nordin, UMNO youth chief Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki, former Johor chief minister Hasni Mohammad and Sabah UMNO leader Bung Moktar Radin. 

The report by NST added that the other two vice-president incumbents – former prime minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Mr Mahdzir Khalid – have not expressed intentions to defend their posts. 

Party insiders told NST that incumbent Mr Khaled is likely to retain his post. 

“Khaled is expected to defend his post successfully, given his good ties with party leaders and supporters,” the source reportedly said. 

NST also reported that the three candidates who have positioned themselves in the “pro-president” camp – Dr Zambry, Ms Azalina and Mr Asyraf – are strong contenders for the three vice-president spots. 

“Zambry, Azalina and Asyraf are the only known pro-president candidates in the party,” the source reportedly told NST, adding that Mr Johari is a “wildcard” in the battle to be one of UMNO’s three vice-presidents. 

“Johari is close to the party president. He is one of the leaders whom Zahid will take advice from. More importantly, Johari has been meticulous in garnering support on the ground.

“He has told his supporters that change (for the better) will happen in UMNO and he is preparing for it,” the source was quoted as saying by NST. 

Source By https://www.channelnewsasia.com/asia/malaysia-umno-vice-president-candidates-elections-supreme-council-3246361