Umno sacking of Khairy will alienate youth, says Ismail Sabri

Umno's dismissal of popular former health minister Khairy Jamaluddin will alienate the youth, says a party veep. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, February 5, 2023.

UMNO is risking the support of young voters by sacking popular leaders such as Khairy Jamaluddin, Ismail Sabri Yaakob said.

In an interview with Utusan Malaysia, the party vice-president Ismail said Umno was sending the wrong message to the youth.

“We’re giving them the wrong signals – that there is no democracy in Umno, (dissenters are) either suspended or fired. That is their perception of Umno.

“They are observant and want leaders like Khairy. He openly criticised the party and to the youth, that was a reasonable action.

“The youth are idealistic. They want (Umno) members to have freedom. Young people will not be a part of a party that restricts their freedom,” Ismail was quoted as saying.

Last month the Malay nationalist party booted former Selangor Umno chief Noh Omar and Khairy for allegedly sabotaging last year’s general election campaign.

Several others were suspended for six years.

Khairy has said that he will not appeal his sacking, saying his criticism of the party was justified.

Ismail, a former prime minister, told the Malay daily that the party did not have the support of first-time voters in the 2022 polls.

“In the recent general election, we were rejected by the youth and professionals.”

He added that the trend was expected to continue in the state elections this year. – February 5, 2023.

Sign up or sign in here to comment.