PUTRAJAYA: Barisan Nasional has rallied its members for a convention today and this has further fuelled speculation that national polls will be called soon.

Barisan secretary-general Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir said such talk should not be dismissed especially when the parliament term ends in just about a year.

“It is time for us to make the necessary preparations. This convention is for Barisan to rally our troops and chart our direction for GE15,” he said.

The current parliament term ends in June next year.

The government and Pakatan Harapan leaders had signed an agreement on bipartisan cooperation and political stability last year, which among others, called for Parliament not to be dissolved before July 31 to allow a period of political stability. However, Umno – the biggest component party in Barisan – has been pushing for the general election to be called.

For Barisan, gearing up for GE15 means ensuring relations among its members are intact.

Loyalty has become a key issue for the coalition which has lost almost all of its members after the 2018 election defeat.

From a membership of 13 parties, only Umno, MCA, MIC and Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) have remained in the coalition.

Zambry, however, does not want to mull over the past.

“What is important is to be in the present and look after those who are with us now.

“Relations among component members must be more than good. It must be greater than great.

“Only with relations that are intact can Barisan enter the election as a strong and united front, regardless of the number of (component) parties,” he said.

The Barisan convention today aims to do just that.

In a show of unity and force, some 4,500 members representing the component parties are attending the convention. PBRS is expected to fly 100 of its members to Kuala Lumpur.

Zambry described the convention as a “re-bonding” session to build strength and understanding among component members.

The theme “Kesetiaan dan Kestabilan” (Loyalty and Stability) reflects matters that are important to the 48-year-old coalition.

“We will stress ‘loyalty’ because of what happened after GE14. Component parties left us and several of our lawmakers leaped elsewhere. We want those present to understand the meaning and importance of loyalty.”