Will we see a divide in Umno tonight?

Aspan Muhyiddin

Analyst Aspan Alias says the split in the leadership will be obvious if large crowd welcomes Muhyiddin home.

(Free Malaysia Today) – A definite split in the Umno leadership will become obvious tonight if large numbers of people turn up at the airport to welcome Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin home from his short holiday, political analyst Aspan Alias says in his latest blog entry.

He notes that there have been moves to ensure a good crowd at KLIA.

“Invitations from the DPM’s office through Twitter, SMS and Whatsapp were evidently massive yesterday, informing everyone that Muhyiddin will be touching down at 9 pm,” he says. “If the response to the invitations is big, then the split in Umno will officially start today.”

Public interest in Muhyiddin’s next move has peaked since it was reported that Najib last Friday practically showed the door to members of the Cabinet who could not agree with the way his administration was handling the 1MDB issue. Muhyiddin, who was absent from the Friday meeting, has more than once indicated his discomfort over the 1MDB affair.

Aspan expresses his disgust that no one tendered his resignation at the Friday meeting. Referring to the Rural and Regional Development Minister Shafie Apdal, he says, many would have expected him to resign considering that he has explicitly complained about ministers being kept in the dark about developments at 1MDB. “Shafie has had to swallow his strong words. He is not courageous enough to resign.”

The fact that no one resigned, he says, indicates that everyone at the meeting decided to take responsibility for whatever happens to 1MDB.

Aspan says Najib, in giving the ultimatum, was “arm twisting” everyone in the Cabinet, “as is natural for a desperate PM to do”.