MELAKA — UMNO and Barisan Nasional (BN) will prioritise candidates who are wanted and favored by the people for the 14th General Election (GE14), Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said.
Hence, the UMNO Vice-President performing the duties of the Deputy President, said all parties should not lobby to become a GE14 candidate because Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak himself knows which candidate is preferred and becomes the people’s choice.
“What is important (in choosing a GE14 candidate) is the choice of the people, the taste of the people. We will prioritise whom the people want. The Prime Minister will give the people whom they want.
“No need to lobby (to become a candidate) via an agency or whatever. This time, the Prime Minister will not take any risk if the candidate is not wanted by the people, we do not want to cast aside the candidates the people want,”he said when opening the Tangga Batu UMNO Division delegates meeting here tonight.
Also present at the event at the Melaka International Trade Centre in Ayer Keroh, was Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron, who is also the Tangga Batu UMNO Division chief and more than 1,000 delegates from the division.
Ahmad Zahid said when the leadership had determined the candidates who would contest in the 14th general election, all party members must accept and express support to them to ensure the victory of the party in the general election.
Meanwhile, he said all UMNO and BN machinery had to focus work on areas identified as ‘retain’ and ‘regain’ ahead of the 14th general election.
“We have the ‘retain and regain’ principle where we retain the area we have, while regaining the area that the opposition won.
“For the seats that are expected to be won, I feel (elected representatives) should go down and give the best service to the people,”he said.
He said the party’s leadership had detailed information on which elected representatives had gone down to serve the people and those who had failed to do so.
Meanwhile, Ahmad Zahid said the co-operation of the opposition parties in Pakatan Harapan was not as united and as solid as the co-operation between the BN component parties.
“I see on the other side (opposition parties), there is no integration between them but our 13 (component) political parties are still in BN. They do not last because they have different directions and ideologies,”he said.
He said BN must be smart in using the media, especially social media, in communicating with the target groups and not using it to fight among themselves.
“If in the last general election we sank because we were were not proficient (in social media) but not now,”he said.