KUALA LUMPUR: Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has accepted the heavy responsibility of bringing Barisan Nasional back from its electoral defeat as the head of the party’s advisory board.

“It is an honour for me and indeed a huge responsibility to restore and strengthen the party in accordance with a new charter which we plan to launch in September,” said the former Umno president.  

Najib, who was appointed as chief of the newly formed Barisan advisory board, said the coalition plans to put forward a multi-cultural, multi-religious and multi-racial image to reflect Malaysian diversity. 

“This will be done in accordance with our constitution,” he said to reporters after the Barisan supreme council meeting here on Tuesday (July 9). 

He added engagements will be done with youths as well as the grassroots to garner more membership for Barisan. 

“We will also use the Barisan platform to hold more engagement programmes in certain areas,” he said.

Najib said he won’t be able to do it alone and will be discussing methods and strategies with the Barisan leadership. 

He also plans to appoint at least three members onto the advisory board. 

“It will be three for now but we’ll see if we need to add more. I have an idea on who the members will be but I will need to ask them first,” he said. 

Najib was appointed chairman of the Barisan advisory board during the its supreme council meeting at Menara Dato’ Onn chaired by Barisan chairman and current Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi. 

In a statement signed by Barisan secretary-general Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, the Barisan supreme council unanimously agreed to his appointment.  

“He will carry out his duties to help Barisan regain the people’s confidence,” he said.

Earlier, Najib was seen arriving at Menara Dato’ Onn around 8.30pm.

The Pekan MP had resigned as Umno president following Barisan’s defeat in the 14th General Election last year.  

He is now facing trial for allegedly misappropriating funds belonging to SRC International Sdn Bhd. 

Other Barisan leaders at the meeting were MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong and MIC president Tan Sri S.A. Vigneswaran