KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Najib Razak called for Umno members to wake up to the current political reality and challenges as the party is bound to face its toughest general election yet to decide the fate of the nation.
In his policy address at the 71st Umno General Assembly today, he reminded delegates that the 14th General Election (GE14) will decide the fate of the country’s sovereignty, the sanctity of Islam and the future of the Malay community.
"We are at a crossroads whereby the Malays are divided into political beliefs and groups that are still searching for the direction of their struggles.
"For that we are grateful that we are still solidly united in Umno," he said to resounding applause by the 2,718 delegates from 191 divisions nationwide at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC).
Najib said Umno is the only political party which remains steadfast in upholding the interest of the Malay Bumiputera community while serving as the pillar for Barisan Nasional (BN) components.
He said the people will have to decide in GE14 so that they will not stray from the party struggles, to evaluate issues wisely and to not be emotional which would cause them to be misled by the Opposition.
Najib reminded the delegates that while Umno remains firm on its fundamental struggles in protecting the interest of the Bumiputera community, the royal institution and Islam, he is also the prime minister for all Malaysians.
"Today, I shall speak not only in the interest of my duty as the president of Umno, nor as the chairman of Barisan Nasional but above all, my utmost and my paramount responsibility at this very important juncture, as the leader of 32 million Malaysians of all races and religions.
"My duty as the prime minister transcends beyond the three million Umno members or the seven million BN members, even the 69 per cent of the Bumiputera community and also Islam, so in short, the next general election is not just another general election," he said.
Najib urged members to ponder on the risk of Umno and BN losing its power and the risk of what had been built over the past six decades in developing the country, go to ashes.
"We could not imagine the nightmare and doom that await us if we ever lose power.
"Could we allow Islam to be insulted in this land? Could we allow the Malay royal institution to no longer be respected or to the extent of being challenged while Malay institutions such as Mara, Felda, Tabung Haji and UiTM, the pride of Bumiptera Umno,, be marginalised?," he asked the delegates.
Najib also warned of the risk that civil servants, who have been the pillar of the government, would be trimmed down should the Opposition assume power.
"And of course, the Opposition might exert their longstanding vengeance over the special rights of the Bumiputera by abolishing them, resulting in the pride of this race will being impeded on our own land," he said.
Najib stressed that if Umno members want to avoid all the nightmares, he told them to pledge to work hard in defending the party and the government.