The Umno permanent chairman has the gift of the gab
<img src="http://192.168.100.100:8080/polopoly/polopoly_fs/1.14196.1322841193!/image/image.jpg" /> HE always obliges Umno debaters who want an extra minute or two to drive home their points.
This, perhaps, could be due to his reputation as an orator who always insisted for his speeches to exceed the allocated 15 minutes when he himself took part in party debates in those years.
Before assuming the master of ceremonies duty as Umno permanent chairman, Datuk Badruddin Amiruldin was an orator famous for his effortless style in injecting humour and witty remarks in his speeches.
He has taken the rostrum at the annual Umno general assembly 19 times before becoming its acting permanent chairman in 2007. Many party members feel his style and presentation can attract newer members into Umno's fold.
Since the start of the assembly on Wednesday, Badruddin had been allowing debaters extra time and referring to young speakers as anak-anak (young ones). In one of the sessions, he even sang the late Tan Sri P. Ramlee's Di Mana Kan Ku Cari Ganti to keep the crowd alert.
On Thursday, he allowed Kelantan Umno delegate Datuk Md Alwi Che Ahmad to go on for another 20 minutes when tabling the motion of thanks for the party president's address.
Lively banter between Alwi and Badruddin amused the delegates and kept them entertained, with Badruddin admitting along the way that he used to persuade former permanent chairman, the late Tan Sri Sulaiman Ninam Shah, to give him extra minutes for that "extra words".
Umno Ampang division committee member Zulkifli Mohamed said Badruddin's wisecracks and style could attract young people to join the party.
"He called a Puteri Umno speaker anak-anak and he also heaped praises for a youngster from the Umno Overseas Club, who took part in the debate. His jokes are honest and may border on sex or race, but he knows that they are okay and the audience also enjoy it."
Zulkifli said Badruddin was a happy-go-lucky person as showed in his past speeches.
Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia history expert Professor Akbal Abdullah said Badruddin had the gift of the gab because his words usually commanded attention from the crowd.
"He is an elderly party member with vast experience, who uses them to good effect.
"His style is different from his predecessor Tan Sri Sulaiman (Ninam Shah) as the latter was from Umno's old guard. But Badruddin's style appeals to newer party members,' said Akbal.