By SHAHANAAZ HABIBDatuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil has confirmed that she will contest the Wanita Umno chief post.
The deputy Wanita chief in a two-paragraph statement said that she had accepted the nominations and support she had received to go for the movement’s number one post in the March party election.
“Wanita Umno must be united and strengthen the party and be bold enough to bring change and renewal,” she said in her press statement on Thursday.
The incumbent Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz has said that she would defend her Wanita chief post and hand over power to her deputy in June, three months after the party polls.
This latest development means that Shahrizat will take on Rafidah for the post.
So far, Rafidah has shown no signs of agreeing to an earlier transition in March and is determined to stick to her June transition plan.
Shahrizat announced the decision Thursday, two days after both the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister asked for her and the wing's chief Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz to resolve the wing's transition plan problem.
Earlier this year, the wing’s exco had endorsed the transition plan with Shahrizat saying that she had no plans to challenge her boss.
However the plan went awry when the wing’s executive committee member Datuk Kamilia Ibrahim said she the plan did not make sense to her and announced her bid for the post of deputy.
On Sunday, Shahrizat made an about-turn when she urged Rafidah to hand over power in March. However, the wing’s exco rejected this and urged Shahrizat to stick to the earlier decision.
Shahrizat, who has obtained 72 nominations against the 118 received by Rafidah said the handing over of reigns should be done in March to streamline with the party polls that would be held in March.
She said the plan did not make sense as she would be acting Wanita chief for the next three years while the post of deputy would be vacant.
Kamilia qualified to contest the number two post after garnering 55 nominations from the 191 divisions in the wing. The minimum needed to do so is 39 nominations.Shahrizat to challenge Rafidah for top post