Friday, October 1, 2010
After more than 30 years – and 11 consecutive terms at the helm of the MIC – Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu will step down in January next year and hand over the presidency to his deputy Datuk G. Palanivel.
The colourful politician made the surprise announcement at the party’s central working committee meeting in Kuala Lumpur on 30th September 2010, taking many of the members aback and shocking Malaysians as well.
Samy Vellu, 74, said he did not want to wait till the end of his term on March 8, 2012.
He added that his departure from the top party post would mark a renewal for the leadership.
Samy Vellu was appointed MIC President on 12th October 1979, after the death of then MIC President, Tan Sri V. Manickavasagam.
Samy Vellu was then included in the Malaysian cabinet as Housing and Local Government minister in 1979.
However, he was best known during his tenure as Malaysian Works Minister between 1979 to 1989 and between 1995 to 2008.
As Works Minister, Samy was responsible to oversee the road developments as well as building developments in Malaysia. He was famous for the Toll issues as well.
Whenever the government decide to increase the Tolls' rate, Samy Vellu will be the first to be blamed by the public.
Samy Vellu shockingly lost his Parliamentary seat in his traditional stronghold in Sungai Siput, Perak during the March 2008 General Elections.
Malaysian Prime Minster Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said on 1st October 2010 : I respect Samy Vellu's decision to step down
Meanwhile in PUTRAJAYA, Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said on Friday 1st October 2010 that he respects MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu's decision to step down, and thanked the Barisan Nasional component party leader for his contribution to the Government and party.
The Prime Minister also said he was already aware of Samy Vellu's intention to step down in January 2011, adding that they had discussed the matter several times.
"I respect Datuk Seri Samy Vellu's decision to step down and wish to thank him for his service to the country and the party.
"We must not forget that over the years, he has contributed towards the MIC and the Government," Najib said at a press conference in Putrajaya on 1st October 2010, after viewing designs of new hospitals.
On Thursday, 30th September 2010, Samy Vellu announced that he would step down in January 2011 and hand over MIC’s presidency to his deputy Datuk G. Palanivel, after more than 30 years - and 11 consecutive terms - at the helm of the party.
The 74-year-old seasoned politician, who dropped the bombshell at the party's central working committee meeting, said he did not want to wait until the end of his term on March 8, 2012, and that his departure from the top party post would mark a renewal for the leadership.
Najib said that in politics, there was no fixed time frame as to how long one should lead the party, even though "leaving the stage abruptly was also bad" as it would leave the party in a state of flux.
"What is important is we know when the right time is to leave and prepare for the line of succession," he added.
Sources - The Star online