Ukip leader ousted after less than six months in the job

Katrina Barker
February 18, 2018

Henry Bolton has been ousted as Ukip leader by members after threatening to sue the party at an Extraordinary General Meeting.

The NEC will shortly decide on an interim leader and "a leadership election will take place within 90 days".

In an address to about 1,500 party members at today's meeting, he said: "I'm personally bitterly sorry for the anguish I've caused my wife and her family".

Bolton has ended the relationship with his girlfriend but the affair prompted a string of senior UKIP politicians to resign over his leadership, warning the situation had become "almost farcical".

In the run-up to the vote, Bolton has hit out at the media interest in his private life following the breakdown of his marriage to Tatiana Smurova, which he said was on par with the Profumo affair and Diana's relationship with Dodi Fayed.

Under the former leadership of Nigel Farage, UKIP helped drive the vote for Brexit, but has since been dogged by in-fighting, financial woes and falling public support.

He also advised Mr Bolton to "get on with the rest of your life" - but Mr Bolton raised the possibility that he might stand again for the leadership, or even sue the party, saying: 'You can not keep a good man down - I am not finished with politics'.

The departure of Bolton, who was only elected to his role in September, will trigger the fourth leadership contest in the party since 2016.

The cash-strapped party faces a separate series of challenges, including the prospect of a hefty legal bill over a defamation action brought by Rotherham's three Labour MPs against MEP Jane Collins. Bunch of muppets. My love for Henry is unconditional of political leaderships. "I ain't going anywhere". "I believe that you have made the best decision that you could in the circumstances". It's time for UKIP to focus on politics and Brexit and not private lives.

Responding to the possibility of Mr Bolton re-running, UKIP's leader in Wales, Neil Hamilton, told Sky News: "He could stand again, he's no stranger to humiliation".

Writing in the Daily Telegraph, he says: "The basic structures of the party organisation are disappearing; branches are closing; and numerous sitting councillors in the forthcoming Spring elections wish to run as independents".

"I think it's going to be hard to unite the party, what we have effectively had today is a rejection of a new draft constitution, a reorganisation and indeed a new way of doing politics", he said.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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