Will UMNO have to build a mega-stadium with the capacity to accommodate 146,000 UMNO delegates before Zahid could be removed as UMNO President?

The past four days marked the lowest ebb in the 69-year-old history of UMNO, as with 38 MPs in Parliament with the exodus of 16 MPs, UMNO has created history in having the least number of UMNO MPs in Parliament for six decades since 1959.

The number of UMNO MPs elected in the previous thirteen general elections were:

1959 – 52/104
1964 – 59/104
1969 – 52/144
1974 – 62/144
1978 – 70/154
1982 – 70/154
1986 – 83/177
1990 - 71/180
1995 – 89/192
1999 – 72/193
2004 – 109/219
2008 - 79/222
2013 – 88/222

Now, from the 54/222 parliamentary seats won by UMNO in the 2018 General Election, UMNO is left with 38 MPs – i.e. from the height of UMNO MPs comprising 56.7% of all MPs in 1964, 49.7% of all MPs in 2004 to the present 17.1 per cent of MPs in Parliament.

UMNO President, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi has defied increasing pressure from inside UMNO as well as pro-UMNO NGOs to step down, declaring that the only way to remove him as Umno president is through the party's general assembly by over 146,000 delegates to fulfil the requisite two-thirds quorum.

This raises the question whether UMNO will have to build a mega-stadium with the capacity to accommodate at least 146,000 UMNO delegates before Zahid could be removed as UMNO President.

If the former UMNO Minister for Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism and Larut MP Hamzah Zainuddin is to be believed that 36 BN MPs including 33 from UMNO had only a month ago signed letters of support for the Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, and that Zahid had been kept completely in the dark about it, then as many as another 20 UMNO MPs may leave UMNO.

This may result in UMNO, which at one time claimed the divine right to rule the country, to be reduced to the regional status of PAS or even in having fewer MPs than PAS for the first time in Malaysian history – another ignominy for UMNO after playing second fiddle to PAS in the Anti-ICERD rally in Kuala Lumpur on Dec. 8, 2018.

But what continues to shock all right-thinking Malaysians is that the convulsions in UMNO have nothing to do with the greatest shame and ignominy which UMNO has brought to Malaysia – Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s kleptocratic government, in particular the monstrous 1MDB corruption and money-laundering scandal and other 1MDB-like scandals in FELDA, Felcra, Tabung Haji, MARA, etc.

UMNO claims to have more than three million members. Have they all lost the moral compass as well?

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri