Ex-PM Ismail decries double standards by Umno leadership

He says despite being a prime minister from Umno, he was a target of attacks by his own party leaders.

(MalaysiaNow) – Umno vice-president Ismail Sabri Yaakob has launched a scathing attack on the party leadership over what he says were double standards in the way they treated him when he was the prime minister for 16 months before last year’s general election.

In comments believed to be directed at Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Ismail compared Umno’s representation in the Cabinet he led with the current one led by Anwar Ibrahim.

He said during his time at the head of the coalition government comprising Barisan Nasional (BN), Perikatan Nasional (PN) and Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), ministers from Umno made up almost half of the Cabinet despite the party having only 38 MPs at the time.

In contrast, he said, only six Cabinet slots were given to Umno in the current coalition government.

“They say this is a big achievement for us. There are six Umno ministers, including one deputy prime minister. Whereas under me, there were 14 BN ministers, including the prime minister.

“Today, no one in the Umno leadership criticises the government. I used to be heavily criticised. But today, the leaders of other parties are praised so highly,” Ismail told Utusan Malaysia in a recent interview.

He also questioned the silence of the Umno leadership even when the current government did something wrong.

“Just look at all the praises now. They (Umno leaders) have been defending the unreasonable actions sometimes taken by the government.

“I had expected that they would defend me – whenever I was criticised too harshly, they could have shielded me. But they themselves joined in the attacks against me,” he added.

Ismail likewise recalled how the media was used by Umno leaders to attack fellow party comrades who served as members of his Cabinet.

“I was pressured by the Umno leadership, as if I was not from Umno. When something happened, the pressure on me was too strong.

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