East Midlands MEP Margot Parker has today announced her resignation as UKIP deputy chairman and has quit the party.
Mrs Parker, who has championed women’s rights and equality, has joined Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party.
She was UKIP spokesman on women’s rights and gender equality and said: “The party leader of UKIP is carrying out a purge of party loyalists to ensure only supporters of the far right activist Tommy Robinson, with whom he now associates with, are considered for approval by the party.
“The policies of the leader have now so damaged the party, I feel I must resign my position and membership of UKIP. This I do with great reluctance and sadness in equal measure.
“The leader seems to be engaging on a ‘crusade’ on issues, which are dividing communities up and down the land.
“He has taken his eye off the ball – the goal has to be Brexit and that is why I have joined the new Brexit Party, which aims to change the political landscape and fight for what people voted for in the 2016 referendum.
“Furthermore, the leader of UKIP has deselected hard-working, sitting, female MEPs. I have fought long and hard for equality – I cannot be part of this distasteful regime any longer.”
Mrs Parker said she will see out the rest of her mandate and to continue to represent and fight for the people of the East Midlands.