“At the moment, Umno is perceived to be so conservative, an Islamist party, a party that propagates propaganda, this is what is clouding the party now, but Umno is not like that.”

- Umno Pulai Youth wing member Muhammad Shaqib Shahrilnizam

COMMENT | An old Umno hand wanted to know what I thought of the nascent “progressive” caucus by young leaders within the party.

One of the movement’s founders gave an interview in the press where he claimed that a “silent majority” felt left out from the policymaking process in Umno.

Muhammad Shaqib said: “The idea of the caucus is to bring a new narrative that is more friendly towards the people.

"We need to find a new narrative so that people would appreciate Umno and they feel Umno is one of the places where they can express their ideas, concerns, and even a place where they can fight for."

The fact is that it is pointless to have a progressive caucus if it does not have a progressive voting base.

And what Umno, the state – which at one time was Pakatan Harapan – the vast religious bureaucracy, the various propaganda organs, the state security apparatus, the media – mainstream and alternative –, religious figures, political figures but most importantly mobs – online and off – have constrained our public spaces making it impossible...

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