We don’t need any more big names, says Nazri

KUALA LUMPUR: Just a day after Umno announced the return of Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib, Datuk Seri Nazri Abdul Aziz said there was no need to bring any more big fishes into the party as there was no importance in it.

The Tourism and Culture Minister said Umno does not need any more prominent names to join it, and that it was ready to face the general election regardless of whether they come on board the country's largest political party.

"We don't need (any more big names). We are ready to go for elections with or without them. We don't want to be distracted by all of this. We are already prepared.

"Our mindsets are already tuned towards the coming general election. I don't think there is any importance in bringing big names into our party," he told reporters, here, today.

Nazri was responding to speculation that Muhammad, or Mat Taib as he is fondly known, was supposed to bring along eight other Selangor government lawmakers and cause the collapse of the state administration.

"What's most important now is winning the hearts of the people. That is more important," he added.

On what Muhammad brings to the table for Umno, Nazri said: "I don't know. That you got to ask him yourself."

Prime Minister and Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak had, on Sunday, called for a special press conference to announce that Muhammad, the former Selangor Mentri Besar, has rejoined Umno.

Mat Taib has been an Umno member since 1964 before leaving in 2013 to join Islamist party PAS, and later PKR in 2015.

He claimed that his decision to rejoin Umno was because he realised the futility of the opposition's cause, and expressed concern over the split of the Malays.

"I made the decision to return to Umno after seeing things on the other side for almost five years where their struggle is nothing but a waste," he said.

Najib also said Muhammad's decision to return was on his own accord and that the latter was not offered any incentives.