Kuala Lumpur: Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, whose ruling party faces the most serious challenge yet to its half-century rule, said today upcoming national polls will be "no ordinary election".
Rallying his United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) at its final general assembly before the polls, Najib also said the opposition would drive the economy into the ground if it won.
By mid-2013, Najib must call what is expected to be his party's toughest election yet after a resurgent opposition scored historic gains in 2008, and he acknowledged its pivotal nature.
"We will compete for every vote, we will work to win the confidence of every single Malaysian citizen, we will knock on every door, we shall open every pathway to hope," Najib, 59, told delegates.
"The 13th general election is not an ordinary election. It will determine the destiny of the country and the people."
His ruling coalition will square off against an opposition alliance led by Anwar Ibrahim - the one-time deputy prime minister and UMNO star who was ousted in 1998 after a falling-out with then-leader Mahathir Mohammad.
Najib, whose UMNO-led Barisan Nasional coalition has been in power since independence in 1957, has yet to face voters at the ballot box as premier.
He took office in 2009 after his predecessor was ousted following the polls humiliation a year earlier.