Last month, the Malay-based party sold its 31.6 percent stake in Kumpulan Utusan, whose flagship publication Utusan Malaysia had previously been kept alive with Umno’s money.
“We will sell our stake in Media Prima as there is nothing much we can do. We can’t put out our own news, and we do not have board representation.
“At least it (the sale) can cover us for another two-and-a-half years,” Mohamad said in an interview with news portal Free Malaysia Today (FMT).
“Umno is a big organisation and it needs a lot of money to maintain it. Running the headquarters has substantial costs. Even paying salaries is difficult now,” he said.
Media Prime controls four television channels (TV3, NTV7, 8TV and TV9), three newspapers (New Straits Times, Berita Harian and Harian Metro) and four radio stations (Fly FM, Hot FM, One FM and Kool FM).
Umno decided to monetise part of its assets after its bank account was one of 900 frozen by MACC over transactions tied to the 1MDB scandal last year.
“I believe the defeat was a blessing in disguise,” said Mohamad, who is also known as Tok Mat.
“The parasites are now gone. We lost because we were arrogant and egotistical, and people were turned off. So now we have to lose these bad characteristics,” he said.
“People are worried about uncertainty in the economy, traders are facing problems and everyone’s buying power is weakened.
“I believe 40 percent of the people are not so interested in issues of race and religion, but rather bread-and-butter issues like the economy,” he said.