Melaka Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman Ab Rauf Yusoh has rejected the label of “dragon, crocodile, lion or tiger in Melaka” given to him, saying he is merely a “humble” leader who is working hard to ensure victory for the party.
Rauf, who has been accused of playing “big brother” and overshadowing former chief minister Sulaiman Md Ali, said people could have misunderstood his responsibility and tried to create a negative perception of him.
“I am viewed as such because I am driving the party with the aim of winning the Melaka state election. I reject this perception with an open heart. However, as a leader I can’t escape criticism, and I regard this as the political game of certain quarters,” the Melaka Umno chairman told Bernama TV in an exclusive interview today.
Rauf, the BN candidate in the hot seat of Tanjung Bidara, said those who were playing up this issue were being irresponsible not only to themselves but also to the people and Melaka.
He did not rule out the possibility that this allegation on his character was propagated by people who were eyeing the chief minister’s post.
“This issue was played up by a frustrated person who could not be renominated for the chief minister post because he was played out after being used to topple the state government,” he added.
Rauf said as the state Umno chief he was seen as being close to Sulaiman, who is state Umno secretary, but added that he knew his boundaries and never interfered in the state administration.
“I respect the boundaries because to me, a state government complete with the state exco structure would definitely understand the function of the state administration,” he said.
Rauf is involved in a three-cornered fight with Perikatan Nasional’s Masjid Tanah MP Mas Ermieyati Samsudin and Zainal Hassan of Pakatan Harapan. Md Rawi Mahmud of BN won the seat in the last general election.
Early voting is on Nov 16 and polling is set for Nov 20.