He will instead concentrate on the foundation he has set up - My Future Foundation - saying that there are other ways in which he could contribute for better understanding, for young people in this country, according to Malaysiakini.
Since his resignation from the Cabinet in September, speculation has been rife that he would be joining one of the PR parties.
Speaking at a Press Conference today - his first since he was sacked from Umno two days ago - Zaid said he was given the boot for his views, and not for attending opposition functions.
“I think they expelled me because of my ideas which they don’t like. It’s not because I attended one dinner.”
Zaid claimed that he is a victim of double standards in Umno. According to him he was not given the opportunity to be heard and was not aware of any specific violation that he had committed.
Here's the full Malaysiakini report.
Zaid: No intention to join any party now
Beh Lih Yi Dec 4, 08 10:55am
Recently-sacked Umno member and former minister Zaid Ibrahim today said he has no intention to join any other political party at the moment.
“I will not join any political party in the near future. I have always said that, when I leave the government, I (would) want to concentrate on the My Future Foundation that I set up.
“I think there are other ways in which I can contribute for better understanding, for young people in this country,” the former de facto law minister told a press conference at the Tropical Golf Club in Petaling Jaya this morning.
Saying that he is thankful and is touched by the gesture of opposition leaders to invite him to join their parties, Zaid said many things can be done, but not necessarily through politics.
The My Future Foundation aims to seek and encourage young Malaysians to bring about positive change regarding race relations.
The press conference was the first time that Zaid - an Umno member of 23 years - has spoken to the media after being sacked from the party on Tuesday, for 'breach of rules' including being seen in the company of opposition leaders and at their events.
The outspoken politician was at the opening of PKR congress last Saturday. On riday night, he had attended a DAP dinner in Penang.
Yesterday, Pakatan Rakyat leader Anwar Ibrahim said that he would welcome Zaid into any of the opposition parties, however adding that he would allow Zaid to take his time to make a decision.
While his presence at the PKR and DAP events last week was widely seen to be the final straw in Umno’s decision to sack him, Zaid disagreed.
“I think they expelled me because of my ideas which they don’t like. It’s not because I attended one dinner. I can only explain that my expulsion was because they resent my views, (and) my more accommodating approach to the opposition and views of the people,” he said.
Although he did not name anyone, Zaid - answering another question - openly told Umno vice-president Muhyiddin Yassin (left), information chief Muhammad Muhammad Taib and supreme council member Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz (right) to stop “belittling” him.
He also stressed that he had not provoked the party to sack him by showing up at these events.
“It was not my intention to provoke or to cause anger (within the party). When I was invited by friends, I attended [...] the opposition (parties) are not our enemies, they just have different opinions.”
‘Denied chance to be heard’
Zaid further claimed that he had become a victim of double standards in Umno, the dominant party in the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition.
“If we look at Umno, there are people who have criticised (Prime Minister and party president) Abdullah (Ahmad Badawi), made fun of him, asked him to step down (and) ridiculed him, and who (have) uttered racist remarks and (committed) many serious violations (of rules), but no action was taken because they are powerful people. So maybe there are double standards here.”
He said this was further proven when he was sacked without being called to explain his actions and without a show-cause letter being issued to him first.
Saying he is still in the dark over the real reason for his removal - since has not received any letter sacking him officially - he said he has no interest in pursuing the matter in any way, including filing an appeal.
He was asked to comment on claims that he and legal firm, Zaid Ibrahim & Co which he founded and which is one of the country's biggest law firms, have benefitted a lot while he was in government due to his 'connections'.
However, Zaid brushed aside the question, saying that he had worked very hard through the years.
To a question whether the firm's business would be affected by his departure from Umno, he said he no longer has any interest in the firm as he had relinquished his shares when appointed minister.
However, Zaid said nothing should be read in the choice of venue.
“It is just that this place is close to my home and easy for my wife to come (to),” he laughed.
Zaid, an ex-senator, resigned his ministerial post in September over the use of the Internal Security Act (ISA) against an opposition politician, a blogger and a journalist.He later wrote anopen letter to the prime minister urging him to repeal the ISA.