KUALA LUMPUR - Two former chief ministers from Malacca are joining the race for the seats in the Umno elections, making it three veterans bidding to be the "comeback kids" at the party polls next month.
Yesterday, Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam announced he was going for the vice-presidency, joining former Negri Sembilan mentri besar Tan Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad who had thrown his hat into the ring when he announced his intention to run for the post last month.
At the same time, another ex-Malacca chief minister Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Thamby Chik, 63, confirmed he would be making a bid for a supreme council seat.
Current vice-presidents Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein and Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal have already stated their intention to defend their posts.
Mohd Ali, who served as Malacca chief minister for 14 years until the May 5 general election, said his decision to join the VP race was not to deny the incumbents from seeking re-election.
"My intention is to defend the party's core struggle, which is to uphold the interests of Islam, the Malays and Malaysia," he said at a Hari Raya do here.
He had contested in the Bukit Katil parliamentary seat in GE13 but lost to PKR Youth leader Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin.
The 64-year-old Mohd Ali was elected Umno vice-president in 2004 but was not allowed to contest for the deputy presidency in 2009 after he was found to have violated party elections regulations.