Kuala Lumpur, Apr 26 (ANI): Malaysian Indian Congress president S. Samy Vellu will stay a year-and-half at the most, as he wants time to "train" his deputy, who will be elected in September.
He said he would announce when he would step down during the party elections. "The new leader will need time to be trained. I can't just walk away."
"The new man will not be in a position to do what needs to be done. In September, I will announce that I will get out of the party at which particular time," The Star quoted Samy Vellu, as saying.
Samy Vellu, 73, who has led the MIC since 1979, was returned unopposed for an unprecedented 11th term in March when his challenger's nomination papers were rejected.
The president, who failed to retain his Sungei Siput parliamentary seat in the last general election, said he expected a four-cornered contest for the deputy presidency.
He named the contenders as MIC secretary-general Dr S. Subramaniam, who is the party's sole Cabinet representative, vice-president S. Sothinathan, former deputy president S. Subramaniam and incumbent G. Palanivel.
Asked if he would endorse any one of them to be his deputy and eventual leader of the MIC, he said this was his "greatest headache."
"Now there are too many people clamouring for that post. Who should really be the person to be the next deputy president? All of them have served the party in their own way,'' he added.
Samy Vellu said he needed to do some very deep thinking before deciding if he should endorse any one of them.
On the expected candidacy of former deputy president Subramaniam, his long-standing archrival, Samy Vellu said they were friends and on talking terms. (ANI)