Amanah grassroots prefer status quo for presidency

Diyana Ibrahim

An Amanah grassroots leader says one of the main reasons Mohamad Sabu needs to be maintained as president is because of his strengths. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, December 23, 2023

THE majority of Amanah grassroots leaders have expressed their desire for Mohamad Sabu, popularly known as Mat Sabu, to serve another term as president as they believe he is the right person to lead until the next general election and several upcoming state elections.

Amanah is conducting its internal elections this weekend for the national leadership committee, which will subsequently elect its president from among its members.

There have been strong rumours that the president’s position will be challenged by vice-president Mujahid Yusof Rawa.

A grassroots leader told The Malaysian Insight that a campaign to retain Mohamad is underway.

“Amanah grassroots still needs Mohamad as president to lead in facing the state elections in Sabah, Malacca and Johor.

“The same goes for the 16th general election (GE16),” sources said on Amanah’s election campaign for the 2023-2026 term.

The re-election will allow Mohamad to serve as president again, as the party’s constitution limits to three consecutive terms. A total of 124 candidates are contesting for 27 positions in Amanah’s national leadership committee in this election.

In the last party polls, Mohamad was appointed president despite only being in the seventh-highest position from representatives’ votes.

Apart from Mohamad, other candidates vying for positions in the committee include Mujahid, Deputy Defence Minister Adly Zahari, and the newly appointed Health Minister Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad.

Mohamad is the minister of agriculture and food security.

Another senior leader, Husam Musa, who was initially expected to contest, had his name left out of the candidate selection list.

There have been strong rumours that the Amanah president’s position will be challenged by Mujahid Yusof Rawa. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, December 23, 2023

Mat Sabu’s strengths

Another Amanah grassroots leader said one of the main reasons Mohamad needs to be maintained is his strengths.

The leader, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Mohamad has demonstrated his ability as president through diplomacy and negotiations with partner parties.

“We don’t see Mujahid’s ability (in negotiations),” said the source.

He pointed out that the effectiveness of Mohamad’s negotiations was evident when Amanah had to relinquish the Titiwangsa seat to be contested by Bersatu in GE14.

“Also, during the Pakatan Harapan convention ahead of GE14, PH chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad thanked Amanah for successfully distributing the seats for PH to contest,” he said.

However, the source admitted that Mohamad’s position still depends on the 27 members of the central committee and the deputy president winning the position.

The source said there was also a tough fight for the deputy president’s post.

Health Minister Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad’s recent appointment makes him a favourite for the vice-president’s post. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, December 23, 2023

While Adly – widely seen as Mohamad’s ally – was touted as the favourite, Dzulkefly’s recent appointment to the cabinet has also pushed him to the front.

“Before this, it was said to be Adly. Dr Dzulkefly’s name came up after he was appointed as health minister,” he said.

He also said the grassroots expected that there would be new faces elected.

“We hope this new leadership is balanced between old and new faces in line with the goals of refreshing the party,” he said. – December 23, 2023

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