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Robinson says over 75 per cent support Foster

Arlene Foster has been nominated to take over from Peter Robinson

FINANCE minister Arlene Foster has been nominated to lead the DUP after Nigel Dodds dramatically withdrew from the race to succeed Peter Robinson.

The North Belfast MP and DUP deputy leader issued a statement saying he would not be taking part in the forthcoming leadership contest, which is due to take place next Thursday.

In the same statement he named Mrs Foster - a former Ulster Unionist – as “the leader that can take our party and Northern Ireland forward to an even better future”.

However, it was reported that DUP veteran Sammy Wilson, the MP for East Antrim, was considering putting his hat in the ring after previously backing Mr Dodds.

Mr Dodds (57) had been clear favourite to step into Mr Robinson’s shoes after the DUP leader announced last month that he was retiring from front-line politics, but said he ruled himself out as leader after giving it “prayerful thought”. 

Peter Robinson tweeted that he had “received a valid nomination” from Mrs Foster for the post of DUP leader.

“Arlene’s nomination was submitted with the support of over 75 per cent of those entitled to vote in the electoral college,” he said.
 

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