The MIC supremo has not endorsed him for the party’s No. 2 post, yet vice-president Datuk S. Sothinathan is confident that his track record and the delegates’ desire for change will spur his chances of winning in the Sept 12 party polls.

“I don’t believe in such endorsements. I think it is better to be endorsed by the delegates.

“It is better to go (campaign) on one’s merit and strength,” he told The Star.

He feels his “good track record” as party secretary-general for six years and vice-president since 2006 will stand him in good stead with the delegates at the general assembly.

Sothinathan, 49, also believes that the desire for change and his “relative” youth would prompt delegates to cast their votes in his favour.

“I’m mature enough politically, have the necessary experience, and am young enough to have the energy needed to serve the community and take it forward,” he said.

Sothinathan, who filed his nomination papers for the deputy president’s post, is up against incumbent Datuk G. Palanivel and former long-term deputy president Datuk S. Subramaniam.

Party president for 28 years, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, who won the president’s post uncontested in April, has endorsed Palanivel for the No. 2 post.

Sothinathan said the delegates’ feedback on his nationwide campaign since May 31 showed that they wanted to make independent decisions instead of being “guided” by such endorsements.

“Endorsements (by party president) are (a practice) of the past; the present is different,” he said, adding that strong winds of change were blowing, as reflected in last year’s general election.

Sothinathan said that, far from being upset, the lack of endorsement by Samy Vellu had spurred him to be independent.

While he was quick to express his gratitude to Samy Vellu for his endorsements in the past, he pointed out that the current political scenario had nudged him out of his comfort zone.

“Our greatest challenge now is the younger generation who have a different mindset, an anti-establishment (way of) thinking. They want leaders who will speak up for their rights,” said the father of three teenagers.

The economics and law graduate has pledged to have a 10-year economic plan drawn up, complete with blueprint for education, employment and business opportunities to increase the Indian equity from the current 1.1% to 3%.

“The Indian community is lagging behind all the other communities and needs more help. I hope to deliver,” he said.


bnaipal said...

Why are Malaysian Indian bloggers so quiet after the indespicable act by some renegade Muslim fundamentalist at Shah Alam? Fellow Malay and Chinese bloggers including the Govt. of Malaysia has strongly condemned the protest. Not seen any remarks from our esteemed PM Najib in the international media – must be hiding under the petticoat of his wife. Arise Malaysian Indian bloggers – voice your fervent objection to fundamentalism in Malaysia!