Brexit: UKIP leader Nigel Farage resigns

After running divisive campaign to leave the EU, Farage quits, while Britain faces economic and political challenges.

    NIGEL FARAGE

    • Farage devoted career to campaigning for a Brexit
    • The 52-year-old focused UKIP's anti-EU campaign on immigration
    • His resignation follows week of unprecedented turmoil in UK politics

    British politician Nigel Farage, a leading proponent for the UK's withdrawing from the European Union in a recent referendum, has resigned as leader of the far-right United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP).

    Farage, who announced his resignation on Monday, said that he would continue to support UKIP and help Britain become independent of the bloc.

    Inside Story - How divided is the UK post Brexit vote?

    "I have never been, and I have never wanted to be, a career politician. My aim in being in politics was to get Britain out of the European Union," the 52-year-old said.

    "So I feel it's right that I should now stand aside as leader of UKIP."

    Farage, who has dedicated his career to campaigning against Britain's EU membership, explained that his "political career has been achieved".

    "What I'm saying today, is, 'I want my life back,' and it begins right now," he said.

    Farage has previously quit as UKIP leader, in 2009 and 2015. His resignation last year was rejected by the party.

    Political turmoil

    A member of the European Parliament since 1999, the former commodities trader was often photographed with a beer in one hand and a cigarette in the other.

    In interviews, he portrayed himself as a man of the people who simply wanted to "take back control" from the EU.

    Educated at one of England's top private schools, Dulwich College, Farage often called on his supporters to reject "political elites".

    His messages resonated with millions in England during the 2015 election, in which UKIP won 12.6 percent of votes, and more recently in the June 23 referendum, which saw 52 percent of Britons choose to leave the EU.

    Farage's resignation follows more than a week of turmoil in British politics after the June 23 referendum, in which Britain  voted in favour of leaving the EU .

    The day after the referendum, Prime Minister David Cameron - who led the campaign to remain in the bloc - announced that he would step down by October. That move opened the way for a leadership contest in the ruling Conservative Party.

    UK: Lack of vision or lack of leadership?

    Boris Johnson, the Conservative politician and former London mayor who led the "Leave" campaign, ruled himself out of the race to replace Cameron as prime minister.

    Meanwhile, the opposition Labour Party faces its own crisis .

    Several MPs have resigned, saying that they do not believe leader Jeremy Corbyn campaigned hard enough to convince Britons to vote to remain in the EU.

    They also cited ineffective leadership as they stepped down from their posts.

    Here is how some responded to Farage's resignation on social media:

     

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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