PUTRAJAYA, 8 Oct 2008: On the day Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is expected to announce whether he would defend his Umno presidency in the March 2009 party election, more than 30 representatives of several Malay non-governmental organisations (NGOs) gathered outside the prime minister’s residence today to urge him to continue to lead Umno until 2010.
They began to assemble at 7am, carrying posters of Abdullah and waving at him as he emerged from Seri Perdana at 9.45am to attend the Cabinet meeting.
Among the NGOs present were the Overseas Umno Alumni Club, the Pan Malaysian Islamic Welfare and Missionary Organisation and Pertubuhan Kebajikan Insan Bakti.
Deputy president of the Overseas Umno Alumni Club Datuk Mohd Rais Zainuddin said Abdullah should defend his post until the power transition in June 2010.
He said this was to avoid contests for the party’s top post as this could jeopardise Umno’s future position. — Bernama