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UKIP deputy leader Margot Parker resigns over Henry Bolton

UKIP deputy leader Margot Parker resigns over Henry Bolton
From BBC - January 21, 2018

UKIP's deputy leader has resigned in protest over Henry Bolton's refusal to step down as head of the party.

Margot Parker told BBC Radio Northampton that Mr Bolton has left the party in "limbo" and that he should go "sooner rather than later".

She will remain a member of UKIP and an MEP for the East Midlands.

Her resignation comes after the party's national executive committee (NEC) unanimously backed a vote of no confidence.

Mr Bolton has faced repeated calls to quit over offensive texts sent by his former girlfriend.

Ms Parker, who is also an East Midlands MEP, said Mr Bolton's "personal life took over the job he was elected to do".

She added: "It would be quicker and cleaner if he came to the conclusion he could go sooner rather than later.

"This is taking time away from doing the job. This puts the party in a limbo situation."

Mr Bolton, who became leader of UKIP in September 2017, said he would defy the NEC and continue as leader, as a contest would finish the party.

Party members will now be given a vote on whether the former Army officer should remain in post.

UKIP chairman Paul Oakden said Mr Bolton was "disappointed" by the NEC's decision but understood "that the party has a process to go through".

"Henry was offered the opportunity to resign but he has made clear that he feels he is the right man to lead the party forward," he added, after a three-hour emergency meeting on Sunday to decide his future.

The committee does not have the power to remove him - that can only be done by a vote of the party's membership.

Mr Bolton had earlier toured TV and radio studios, saying the committee had no right to pass "moral" judgement on his private life.

'Attempted coup'

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