Excerpted from The Star, 29 January 2009
KUALA LUMPUR: Abolish the three main party wings and Putera Umno to eradicate corruption in the party – this is the radical suggestion of Umno disciplinary board chairman Tengku Tan Sri Ahmad Rithauddeen.
Calling for a revamp of Umno’s political structure, including a re-look at the quota system for elections, the veteran party leader said the scourge of money politics and vote-buying could be overcome by making Umno a singular organisation.
“There is no need for the Wanita, Youth and Puteri wings and Putera Umno,” he stressed.
“Do we really need Puteri Umno and Putera Umno?” he asked. “The party also needs to consider Umno Youth and Wanita wings.
“There is no women’s association in the Labour or Conservative parties in England.
“When there are more contests, such problems (money politics) will exist,” he told a press conference at the Umno headquarters.
Tengku Rithauddeen revealed that the board had received information on money politics in Putera and Puteri Umno, but said no official report had been received by the disciplinary board.
He appealed to Umno members to think of their responsibility to the party and country.
“My feeling is that if you want to reduce the problem of money politics and contests for posts, it will be better if these wings be abolished.
“I must also say that the consequences of the quota system is very bad,” he added.
Asked to elaborate on his call for the closure of Puteri Umno and Putera Umno, Tengku Rithauddeen said its members were youngsters and teenagers.
“They are too young. There is no need to expose them to politics at too young an age.
“They need to concentrate on their studies and their careers.
“Don’t be too involved in politics. It is not their time yet.
“We need to bring this country to a higher level of development and be more competitive than other countries. But here, it’s always about politics,” he lamented.
On the defection of Bota assemblyman Datuk Nasarudin Hashim to PKR, Tengku Rithauddeen said that he felt kecil hati (disappointed) over the action of party members who abandoned ship when they were dissatisfied or when problems occurred.
“We can all settle issues within the party,” he added.
He rejected the notion that Umno and Barisan Nasional were no longer relevant.
“Umno has proven itself with many successes over the past 50 years and has helped the people.”
saya rasa, ini dah mcm marahkan nyamuk, kelambu dibakar. Marahkan gejala politik wang dalam UMNO, semua sayap-sayap hendak dihapuskan?
Jika sayap-sayap UMNO dibubarkan, ke manakah hala tuju kita nanti? apakah kita akan selesa dirojakkan dibawah satu nama UMNO sahaja? Puteri, Pemuda, Wanita mempunyai ideal dan perjuangan mereka sendiri di samping mendukung perjuangan UMNO. Tidakkah akan menjadi satu parti yang caca merba, sekiranya dirojakkan semua dalam satu kuali sedangkan kita mempunyai ideal-ideal yang berasingan?
Apa pendapat anda, kawan-kawan puteri? perlukah sayap-sayap UMNO dibubarkan untuk menangani gejala rasuah politik yang semakin berleluasa?
PS: I'm not sure i would be dragged in political arena if there are not for Puteri. UMNO alone has no appeal. without pink outfit and unconventional approach doing things.