UMNO vice president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal has defended Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin's work ethics, saying the party deputy president has always discharged his responsibilities well.
"I can vouch for him. He is not one who shirks his duty.
"He had successfully led Barisan Nasional in 17 by-elections and he has always stood by the party even at the time when it was facing problems," he told reporters on the sideline of the Umno general assembly yesterday.
He said Muhyiddin's criticism of party president Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak should not be viewed as an attempt to split the party.
"It was an attempt to strengthen the party so that Barisan can face the 14th general assembly in a stronger position," he said.
On Friday, Muhyiddin wrote on his Facebook saying that he had never shirked his duties and that only leaders who were honest, fair and not corrupt, deserved loyalty.
This was in reference to Najib's opening speech at the general assembly where he had listed that the responsibilities of deputy president and vice president was, among others, to help and be loyal to the president.
Umno veteran Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, when asked on the matter, said everyone wanted leaders who are honest and responsible.
He also said that he did not care about personalities as his main concern was that Umno remain strong.
"I hope common sense will prevail and we will be united once again," he said.
He also said that everyone should be allowed to express their opinion.