No political element in Ahmad Zahid’s appointment, based on UMNO’s hierarchy – Ahmad Maslan

ROMPIN — The appointment of UMNO president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi as Deputy Prime Minister was not made based on political interests but in consideration of his position in the party hierarchy.

UMNO secretary-general Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan said the appointment of Ahmad Zahid to the country’s second-highest office was also aimed at stabilising the unity government which was formed after no party won a simple majority of 112 seats in the Dewan Rakyat.

“There has never been a Cabinet that has not been criticised. How often do we see something that is 100 per cent perfect? There must be disagreements here and there.

 “If we give it (the position) to someone other than the president (Ahmad Zahid), that stability is somewhat in question. Firstly, the strength of UMNO and secondly the unity government itself.

 “That is why we want stability and the party hierarchy is the right thing to follow now,” he told reporters after attending a ceramah (political talk) in Kampung Pianggu yesterday.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman was among the 27 Cabinet members who took their oath of office before the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah at Istana Negara yesterday.

Besides that, Ahmad Zahid also holds the post of Minister of Rural and Regional Development.

Asked whether the party accepted the Cabinet’s decision, Ahmad said there was positive feedback from the party’s rank and file.

 “We are aware that we have only 30 seats and six representatives (as ministers), even though we demanded more. We are waiting for the list of deputy ministers,” he said. — BERNAMA