Malaysia – Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin stated today that Umno ministers gathered at a hotel in Putrajaya yesterday morning for breakfast since they hadn’t broken bread in a long time.
He went on to say that the gathering was not intended to discuss dissolving Parliament.
His remarks came after Utusan Malaysia reported on the meeting earlier in the day, claiming that it had raised many eyebrows.
Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican, a member of the Umno supreme council, paid for the brunch. It had nothing to do with Parliament’s dissolution.
They just hadn’t seen each other in a long time, so they wanted to catch up, according to Khairy, who is also the Umno MP for Rembau, at a news conference following a business visit to the Malaysian Red Crescent.
Umno ministers and deputy ministers convened at a hotel in Putrajaya, according to Utusan Malaysia, with some coming as early as 8.45 a.m.
Among those spotted were Khairy himself, Reezal, Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa, Federal Territories Minister Datuk Shahidan Kassim, National Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Sadique, Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Minister Tan Sri Noh Omar and Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Noraini Ahmad.
Several factions within the Umno party pushed for an early 15th general election during the party’s just finished General Assembly (GE15).
On the last day of the assembly, however, Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi claimed the party’s top five leaders were unified in making choices affecting party concerns and the people’s interests.
He acknowledged that there was talk of a rift between party leaders and the government, which was also raised in Umno delegates’ and party wings’ debates, but maintained the claims were baseless.
The term “Top Five” was also used frequently to create the notion that the party’s president, deputy president, and vice presidents are all on the same page. On GE15, Ahmad Zahid stated that the precise date will be determined by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, who is also an Umno vice-president.