Umno not out to ‘kill’ PPBM, says Tok Mat

Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan says he cannot understand why PPBM wants to contest in seats already occupied by PAS or Umno.

PETALING JAYA: Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan has denied that Umno was out to “kill” PPBM, even as his party reconsiders its relationship with PPBM.

Almost three quarters of its divisional leaders have said they would not want to cooperate with PPBM during the next general election.

However, Mohamad argued it was the other way round.

Mohamad said that Umno, PAS and PPBM had agreed to avoid three-cornered fights in the next general election and the decision must be respected.

He said he could not understand why PPBM wanted to contest in seats already occupied by PAS or Umno, and were trying to capture Umno’s “market share”.

PPBM’s intentions had angered Umno and the party could not be blamed for it. “We’re not jealous nor are we out to kill anyone. But it is you who wants to kill us,” he said, referring to PPBM.

“And Umno is not going to remain quiet. As the deputy president, I will fight for the party. Don’t try to spoil our market share,” said Mohamad in an interview tonight.

Mohamad, who is informally known as Tok Mat, had been asked to comment on the status of Barisan Nasional’s relationship with Perikatan Nasional in the wake of the Umno divisions’ rejection of PPBM.

Yesterday, Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi revealed that 143 of Umno’s 191 divisional heads told the party leadership that they do not want to cooperate with PPBM for the next general election.

Over the weekend, Umno leaders openly trained their guns on PN, with several calling on their party to withdraw its support for the government.

Umno’s supreme council is to debate a motion on the future of the party’s relationship with PPBM on Wednesday.