Malaysia: For Malays in Johor, no one can usurp Umno

  • UMNO is still heavily involved in the communal affairs of the people in its birthplace Johor despite losing power to splinter party Bersatu and ruling coalition Pakatan Harapan, said grassroots members.
  • They told The Malaysian Insight Umno is still a factor among Malays in kampung, particularly in matters of welfare and community affairs.
  • This was acknowledged by Johor Bersatu leaders as well, who said the “Umno culture” remains strong in the state. Johor Bersatu secretary Mohd Solihan Badri said his party needs time to displace Umno at the grassroots level.
  • Bersatu’s weakness in the state stems from the fact that it doesn’t have grassroots strength despite all its leaders are from Umno.
  • This fact was stressed by an Umno member from Taman Seri Kluang who said that although PH succeeded in taking over the state, the four component PH parties – Bersatu, Amanah, DAP and PKR – all lack grassroots strength.
  • An Ayer Hitam Umno branch chief, who wanted be identified as Pak Uda, said since PH took over the administration of Johor, no welfare or social activities in his area would have been possible without the assistance of Umno members.
  • Bersatu is the lead party in the Johor government with Dr Sahruddin Jamal as the menteri besar.
  • PH holds 39 seats in the 56 state assembly – DAP (14), Bersatu (11), Amanah (9) and PKR (5). On the other hand, the opposition BN has 17 seats – Umno 14, MIC (2) and PAS (1).

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