Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan delivers his speech during a Barisan Nasional convention at the World Trade Centre Kuala Lumpur June 1, 2022. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
By R. Loheswar
Wednesday, 01 Jun 2022 11:37 AM MYT
KUALA LUMPUR, June 1 — Barisan Nasional (BN) must reinvent to retain its appeal to voters and not think the victories in the last three state elections meant it was now the default choice on ballots, said Umno deputy president Datuk Mohamad Hassan.
Speaking at the convention for BN’s 48th anniversary today, the Umno leader known as Tok Mat urged components to keep up efforts to convince voters that the coalition should be placed in charge of Malaysia’s recovery.
He said the coalition’s defeat in the 14th general election was a wake-up call that the coalition could no longer take voter support for granted.
“Times are changing and BN can’t be bogged down by old nostalgia,” he said during the event at the World Trade Centre here today.
“After 48 years, we must ask ourselves how we can reinvent BN’s name or recalibrate what we have, who we are and where are we heading so that we can give Malaysians the chance to see why we are different from the rest.”
He also said the public looked at Umno and BN in one of two ways, either as a multiracial coalition championing the rights of all or a hive of corrupt politicians.
Tok Mat said it was vital that BN disabuse Malaysians of the second view and convince them on the first.
“We must avoid BN being associated with corruption and must step into the public eye with a cool, serious and promising brand that can invoke trust in the people. That would make BN a revolutionary party.
“When people ask why BN must rule, we point to the current rising prices of protein, cost of goods increasing and shortages of food stock. Not forgetting the receding trust and faith in public offices.
“For this to happen we must reject political traders and opportunists,” he added.
BN lost for the first time in GE14, ending over six decades of uninterrupted rule since the country’s independence and leading to top leaders such as former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his deputy, Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi being charged on dozens of corruption charges.
Since then, however, BN has managed to return to power unelected, first by partnering with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) that turned on the Pakatan Harapan coalition that won the 2018 election.
Umno then seized the prime minister’s post from by mounting a campaign that forced Bersatu president Tan Sri Muhiyddin Yassin to resign and for Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to take his place.
BN is holding a one-day convention in conjunction with its 48th anniversary today.