Malaysian Indian Congress to hold working committee meeting May 23

Singapore, May 20 (IANS) The Central Working Committee (CWC) of the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) will hold its meeting Thursday, thereby setting into motion the process of holding the party’s presidential election.

Party vice president M. Saravanan said the CWC members will mainly discuss the formation of the election committee, the New Straits Times reported Monday.

Formed in 1946, MIC is one of the oldest political parties in Malaysia.

“I understand that there have been calls from various quarters as well as those from within the party to hold the presidential election as soon as possible since it is overdue,” Saravanan said.

“But I would like to remind everyone that the election had been postponed only to make way for the 13th general election.”

The MIC is one of the three major constituents of the country’s ruling Barisan Nasional coalition, the other two being the United Malays National Organisation and the Malaysian Chinese Association.

In the general elections of the country held May 5 this year, despite high expectations, the MIC performed miserably, winning just four parliamentary seats, the same number it held prior to the polls, and five state seats, down from seven it held earlier.

After the elections, the party came under criticism from various quarters with some suggesting that the MIC should start grooming young leaders.

Ethnic Indians comprise a little over seven percent of the country’s total population of nearly 30 million.

“We are also looking into having more young leaders in the party this time around, an approach which (former MIC president) Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu himself had taken since his leadership days,” Saravanan said.

The party last held its organisational elections in 2009 with Samy Vellu retaining the president’s post for a record 11th consecutive term.

He had stepped down in 2010 and Datuk Seri G. Palanivel took over as acting president.

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