KUALA LUMPUR, 26 March 2009: Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir who lost in the contest for the Umno Youth chief post, said today the defeat does not mean the battle is over.
His supporters are disappointed but Mukhriz said there was no stopping his struggle to institute changes in the party.
“I will continue to contribute although I no longer hold any post in the party,” said the son of former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Speaking to Bernama after visiting the Malaysian National News Agency’s operation centre at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) here today, Mukhriz said he could understand the feelings of his supporters but maintained that his struggle would continue despite the defeat.
In the election yesterday, Mukhriz, 44, polled 232 votes and lost the contest to Khairy Jamaluddin, 33, who polled 304 votes.
The other candidate is former Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo, 43, who polled 254 votes.
Mukhriz said Umno Youth should be sincere in instituting changes.
Asked whether he would continue to voice out if he felt that the new leadership had erred, he said, “Of course, I will.”
“I won’t keep quiet just because power transition is taking place in the party. Datuk Seri Najib knows this; he knows my character.
“I am voicing out for the sake of the party and the people,” said Mukhriz who came to the Bernama operation centre clad in red Malay traditional attire with his trademark muffler worn around the neck.
Mukhriz will relinquish his post as the coordinator for the Aman Malaysia non-governmental organisation (NGO) as he will no longer be the Umno Youth international relation and NGO bureau chief following his defeat. — Bernama