Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pak Lah to be PM till March; party polls may be in December

The Malaysian Insider - UPDATED

OCT 23 - Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi said today the Umno supreme council will meet next Thursday to consider bringing forward Umno polls to December.

However the Umno president said that even if the party holds its elections in December, he will still hand over power to the new Umno president only in March assuming Barisan Nasional (BN) remains in control of the government.

Abdullah has already announced he will not seek re-election as Umno president, and Datuk Seri Najib Razak is the favourite to take over the party's leadership.

The party's general assembly had been postponed to next March to ensure a smooth transition of power, but some senior Umno leaders have been asking recently for the polls to be held in December instead.

Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi, was speaking in Beijing after opening the Khazanah Nasional Berhad Beijing Representative (BRO) office.

Abdullah said the timeline of the power transition in March next year remains unchanged.

Bernama reports the Prime Minister as saying "We already have a transition plan. The transition plan will be in March next year," he said after launching the Beijing representative office of Khazanah Nasional today.

Abdullah was asked by Malaysian newsmen on reports of moves by some Umno members to push for the party elections to be reverted to December this year.

The party general assembly, originally planned for December, was moved to March to pave the way for a smooth transition of leaders.

Elections for the Youth and Wanita wings of the party will also be held at the general assembly.

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