Friday, May 11, 2012

‘EC chief is still an Umno member’

Although EC chief Abdul Aziz Yusof had not paid his fees for 30 years, PKR sec-gen Saifuddin Nasution says that the Umno membership fee is paid only once in a lifetime.

PETALING JAYA: PKR says that Election Commission chairman Abdul Aziz Yusof is still an Umno member although the latter had not paid his membership fees for 30 years.

“It’s because you only pay membership fee once in a lifetime in Umno,” said PKR secretary-general Saifuddin Nasution at a press conference today. Also present was PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli.

Last month, PKR alleged that Aziz and his deputy Wan Ahmad Wan Omar are Umno members.

Aziz is said to be registered at Sri Ampang Baru Umno branch while Wan Ahmad is said to be registered in Pasir Mas chapter of the party.

Wan Ahmad had since said that it was a case of mistaken identity, as it was another man who shared the same name as he in Pasir Mas.

In defence of Aziz, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Abdul Aziz said that the EC chief’s membership in the party had lapsed as the latter did not pay his fees since registering in the 80s.

Saifuddin said that there were two types of fees that are imposed on Umno members, which are the membership fee and the annual fee.

“Membership fee is a one-off payment. If you don’t pay your annual fee, you cannot take part in any Umno meetings and contest for party posts. But you are still a member,” said Saifuddin who was a former Umno youth secretary.

Saifuddin,who is also Machang MP, urged Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak to set up a tribunal to probe the matter as soon as possible.

“The matter is very important as Article 114 of the Federal Constitution clearly states that an EC official should not hold any position in any other organisation unless it’s a charity or welfare body,” he said.

Asked if he would apologise to Wan Ahmad for accusing him of being an Umno member, Saifuddin said,” There are 10 other similar names registered as Umno members. Let Wan Ahmad come clean and tell us in which branch he is registered with.”

Isa’s eligibility

In another development, Rafizi urged the Malaysian Cooperatives Commission (SKM) to act professionally in dealing with several Felda settlers’ objection to Felda chairman Isa Samad’s bid to become Felda Investment Corporation’s (KPF) chief.

The settlers had filed a complaint alleging Isa is not eligible to head KPF citing the investment arm’s by-laws.

The PKR leader said that he was concerned as Isa had also filed a complaint to SKM to get him appointed to KPF without waiting for the annual general meeting scheduled at the end of the year.

“Both cases are being heard tomorrow by SKM’s litigation director Kamarulzaman Mohd Buhari. It may create a conflict of interest,” said Rafizi.

He added that it was best for SKM to hold separate hearings for both cases and get different officers to chair the tribunals.

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