Health DG against any GE in near term


HEALTH DG Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah is unequivocally against any general election (GE) in the near term, said Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin Abu Bakar.

Khairy said discussions about the roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccine and how it may affect the timing of the GE were brought up in a meeting with the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) yesterday, to which the Health DG voiced his objection against any poll.

“This question was asked just now to the DG of Health. He said unequivocally that he is against any GE in the near term,” Khairy said in a press conference at the Parliament yesterday.

He said he is willing to let go of his minister position if Umno, through its supreme council, decides to withdraw from the Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition that is led by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

As a member, Khairy said he is bound by the decision of the party. “If my party decides at the supreme council and instructs Umno members to withdraw, then as an Umno member, I am, of course, bound by the decision of the supreme council,” he said.

As it is, Khairy said the supreme council has decided not to have any cooperation with the Opposition parties — DAP and PKR — which he also agreed.

He said there are various and differing views within Umno at the moment, just like any other party, but the members will remain guided by the decision of the supreme council.

Umno is scheduled to hold its supreme council meeting today, which pundits believed would discuss the party’s working cooperation with PN.

Meanwhile, in response to the sacking of Tan Sri Annuar Musa as the Barisan Nasional (BN) secretary general, Khairy said BN chairman Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has the right to appoint any secretary general of the party.

“The appointment of secretary general of BN is the sole prerogative and at the discretion of its chairman, which is Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid. With that, of course, it is within his right to change the secretary general.

“Whether it was fair or not, it is a political question and I think it is a political question that will be answered over the next couple of days,” he said.

Annuar has also confirmed his sacking as BN’s and Muafakat Nasional‘s secretary general.

Posting his statement on Twitter, Annuar said he has no further comment on the matter, adding that “it is time to calm down”.

However, in a message on a photo attached to his Twitter post, Annuar expressed his gratitude to the president for the opportunity to serve in both posts.