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UKIP leader Paul Nuttall resigns

UKIP head steps down paving way for possible Farage comeback

UKIP leader Paul Nuttall has stepped down from the helm of the party after it failed to secure any seats in the general election.

In Nuttall’s own seat, he dropped 10,000 votes on the UKIP share compared with the 2015 election, returning just 3,308 votes in Boston and Skegness.

London Assembly member Pete Whittle has taken over as acting leader with immediate effect.

Former party leader Nigel Farage has previously said he could return to the UKIP fold if he felt that politicians were not following through on their Brexit promises.

Nuttall said: “The prime minister, and I suspect it will be a Tory, must know that if they begin to backtrack or barter things away then they must know they will be punished at the ballot box and that will only happen if UKIP is electorally viable and strong.

“We are in effect the country’s insurance policy on Brexit.”

While Nuttall said that UKIP needed “new focus and new ideas” the party had a “great future”.

“I say to members: keep the faith, politics will come back onto our turf and we have to be organised and ready to take full advantage when it does.

“To the voters I say: UKIP is still here and UKIP is not going away.”

Overall, UKIP received 593,852 votes, over three million less than in 2015.

Nuttall has been at the head of UKIP since last November when he took over from Farage.

Other parties outside of the major players also lost votes. The Green Party lost 2 per cent of its votes, but held on to its solitary seat. In Wales, Plaid Cymru gained a seat, and Sinn Fein and the Democratic Unionist Party added three and two seats respectively in Ireland.

The British National Party returned 4,642 votes across the UK.

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