Irish PM Enda Kenny announces resignation

Ireland's prime minister, Enda Kenny, who helped steer the country out of recession following the global financial crash, has announced that he is stepping down as the leader of his Fine Gael party.

Meanwhile, he has declared that he will continue to carry out his duties as party leader and Taoiseach throughout this internal election process.

The outgoing premier said previous year that he would not lead Fine Gael into the next general election, due by 2021 at the latest.

Simon Coveney was a one-time favourite for the role, but is now in Varadkar's shadow as the 7/4 second favourite.

Kenny will remain as a party leader in acting capacity until his successor is elected.

Mr Kenny was said to have been composed, making the announcement on his own terms.

One that says to people that if you contribute to the system, the system is there to support you.

The Taoiseach has resigned as leader o the Fine Gael party.

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Louth Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick, meanwhile, has announced he will vote for Simon Coveney.

"I hope now Leo goes on to win this Fine Gael contest and help lead our country after the enormous progress of this Government over the past six years".

Minister for Social Protection Mr Varadkar was speaking at a press event at Dublin alongside the Minister for Public Expenditure Paschal Donohoe, who publicly endorsing him earlier today.

Meanwhile, Leo Varadkar described him as an "extraordinary Taoiseach and Fine Gael's most successful leader ever".

The Leader has since learned organisers have provisionally set their sights on June 9, the week after a new Fine Gael leader is expected to be ushered in. He also travelled to Canada for talks with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Under party rules, Fine Gael's 73 lawmakers make up 65 percent of the vote with the balance split between councillors and ordinary members.

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny will step down at midnight Wednesday amid a police corruption scandal, a decision that could trigger parliamentary elections.

"Leo is a person whom I hold in the highest regard, I believe he has the experience, skill and integrity to provide the leadership our country needs and deserves".

  • Adam Floyd