save malaysia!

Umno leaders take shots at each other over Rafizi

Publish date: Sat, 03 Jun 2023, 01:54 PM

A war of words has erupted between two senior Umno leaders over criticism levelled at PKR's Rafizi Ramli, in what appears to be a sign of tension building up in the Malay party six months after joining hands with its long-time foes to form the government.

This came a day after Umno secretary-general Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki reprimanded Johor Umno man Puad Zarkashi for criticising Rafizi's performance as the economy minister.

Asyraf, in a defence of Rafizi, said any weaknesses in the government were a collective responsibility and did not lie on the shoulders of a single individual.

He said Umno leaders criticising the ruling coalition of which it was a part was akin to "shooting ourselves in the foot".

Responding to Asyraf, Puad asked if Rafizi was above criticism, and said the PKR deputy president was once "inciting". 

"What does shooting yourself in the foot mean? Cannot be criticised? Cannot be reprimanded? Cannot give an opinion? 

"My job is not to incite. I have not taken over Rafizi's old job," he added.

Rafizi is among ministers who have been targeted by critics, with internet memes and social media postings mocking his previous speeches lambasting the government over price hikes and the falling ringgit.

Barely a month after taking over the economy portfolio, Rafizi was attacked for telling the public not to consume chicken if it was too expensive.

He was also recently taken to task after the ringgit dipped to its lowest value against the US dollar since the Asian currency crisis of the late 1990s.

In a defiant tone, Puad said one would be shooting himself in the foot if he failed to perform and "failed to do something extraordinary, and his formula rendered useless".

"That makes the government weaker. I can be accused of shooting myself in the foot if I am afraid of speaking up and allow these weaknesses to pile up."

Puad is among several senior Johor Umno leaders who have emerged as vocal critics of PKR ministers.

Two others, veteran Umno leader Shahrir Samad and Supreme Council member Nur Jazlan Mohamed, have continued to question Pakatan Harapan (PH) ministers.

Just last week, Shahrir shared a meme poking fun at Rafizi's past claim that the weak ringgit was due to the 1MDB scandal.

"Now its value is much lower because there is no 1MDB," read the caption, accompanied by pictures of Rafizi.

In April, Nur Jazlan lashed out at PH leaders for suggesting that Umno had decided to join Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim's government because it was fighting for survival after being rejected by its traditional Malay base in the election last year. 

DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang and other PH leaders have also come under attack from Umno after criticising the bid to secure a royal pardon for jailed former prime minister Najib Razak.

"They are afraid if Najib goes free. He is a threat to PH and Anwar. They are afraid that Umno will become stronger through cooperation between Najib and Zahid," Puad had said.

Be the first to like this. Showing 0 of 0 comments

Post a Comment