As you will be aware, under the UKIP Constitution there must be a Leadership election within 90 days of the EGM held on 17th February last.
The Returning Officer Piers Wauchope yesterday circulated the request for nominations.
Many people have asked me my intentions and if I intend to run for the Leadership.
As you will know, I volunteered for the post of Interim Leader purely in order to save the Party from what was its imminent insolvency and winding-up.
I am very pleased to say we have now weathered that particular storm and the Party is now back in the black financially – due entirely to the generosity of our members.
However, we are not out of the woods yet and much more needs to be done. A leadership election at this time would cost anything upwards of £30,000, and this is money we simply cannot spare at this time.
Therefore I offer a solution to the problem. I am prepared to stand as Leader and hold office for the next twelve months.
This will give me and my colleagues the time to put the Party on a sound footing financially, organisationally and politically. It will also see us past the date when Britain is supposed to leave the European Union – 29th March 2019.
If the Leadership Election is uncontested then we will spare ourselves the cost of a contest we cannot afford.
After Easter, I will email you all again with an update on the financial situation of the Party (good news) and the reforms I am putting in place.
Gerard Batten MEP