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Khairy still eyeing top office, keeping all options open

The former Rembau MP says the upcoming state elections are 'a possibility'.

Ahmad Mustakim Zulkifli
2 minute read
Former Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin.
Former Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin.

Former Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin says he is open to all options, days after being sacked from Umno on grounds of violating party discipline during the campaign period for the recent general election. 

Khairy, a former health minister, was given the boot alongside ex-Selangor Umno chief Noh Omar. 

Others including Sembrong MP Hishammuddin Hussein were slapped with a six-year suspension of membership as Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi made good on his vow to purge the party of those critical of top leadership decisions. 

Speaking in an interview with radio station BFM this morning, Khairy said he was still holding to his ambition of becoming prime minister – a goal first announced during his campaign for the Sungai Buloh constituency. 

"I do still want to lead this country one day. How do I get there? I don't know. 

"But I want to make sure that the decision I make is based on the vision of the country that I am happy and comfortable with," he said.

Khairy was among several senior Umno leaders who called for Zahid's resignation following the party's worst electoral performance ever, the aftermath of which saw the Umno chief taking 30 MPs from Barisan Nasional to back PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim as prime minister.

He himself was transferred out of his Rembau seat to make way for Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan, eventually losing the Sungai Buloh race as well as his seat in the Dewan Rakyat. 

While campaigning in Sungai Buloh, Khairy openly declared his intention to contest the Umno presidency, adding that the party had lost its way and should be "fixed".

Speaking this morning, the former Umno Youth chief said he would take his time to decide on his next move, adding that he had received offers in a wide range of fields, from politics and the academia to business. 

"Opportunity present themselves. The state election is a possibility," Khairy said, referring to the polls in six states to be held this year. 

On joining another party, he said he would consider joining one that aligns with his vision for the country, emphasising inclusivity, good governance, and progressiveness. 

On his prospects of rejoining Umno, he said the Malay party might have reached a point of no return. 

"If I contemplate returning to Umno, it must be a different entity than it is today," he said.