UMNO has accepted the decision of suspended vice-president Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal to quit the party, said party secretary-general Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor.
He said that according to party rules, “if he (Shafie) has declared having left (the party), automatically he was no longer an UMNO member.
“We will just delete his name from the (UMNO) membership list,” he told Bernama when asked to comment on Shafie’s announcement earlier today on quitting the party.
Shafie, who was suspended as a member on June 24, announced he was quitting the party, at a meeting with his Semporna constituents in Semporna, Sabah.
Tengku Adnan said: “Whoever wants to leave UMNO, please do ... because we only want members who are really responsible, loyal and trustworthy to be in the party.”
“Perhaps he (Shafie) was disappointed at having been dropped from the Cabinet or there may be other reasons ... he should not give in to emotions. If he loves the party, he should not give in to emotions; there can be all sorts of problems,” he said.
Meanwhile, UMNO Supreme Council member Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani said Shafie’s decision to quit the party did not have any impact on the party though he might claim to have a major influence in UMNO.
The spirit of unity was an important element in strengthening the party compared to individuals, he said.
“The strength of every leader depends on the strength of the party. If the party is weak, however strong a leader may be will not have any impact. The important thing is for the party to be strong and united,” he told reporters at the handing over of Aidilfitri goodies by members of the Kuala Lumpur Hospital Board of Visitors here today.
Johari said Shafie’s decision to quit the party was his own.
“If he has decided to leave UMNO and join any other party, we wish him every success,” he said.
In Kota Baharu, Kelantan Federal Action Council chairman Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed expressed sadness that Shafie had decided to leave UMNO.
He said many in the party had hoped that Shafie would remain until the disciplinary committee had come out with its report.
“We hope he will reconsider his decision,” said Mustapa, who is International Trade and Industry Minister.