Ex-leader opts not to run again


FOR­MER NSW La­bor leader Luke Fo­ley will not con­test the seat of Auburn af­ter al­le­ga­tions emerged he in­de­cently touched an ABC jour­nal­ist.

Mr Fo­ley an­nounced on Thurs­day he would re­sign as leader to sit on the back­bench and pur­sue defama­tion claims af­ter he was ac­cused of touch­ing jour­nal­ist Ash­leigh Raper in­ap­pro­pri­ately at a 2016 Christ­mas Party.

But yes­ter­day evening, as the party con­sid­ered moves to dis­endorse him, Mr Fo­ley wrote to its gen­eral sec­re­tary say­ing he would run out his term and not seek re-elec­tion.

Mr Fo­ley said he’d had time to re­flect and talk to friends and col­leagues, and had de­cided to re­sign his en­dorse­ment for the seat of Auburn. “The Party must fo­cus on the elec­tion which is at hand. I do not want to be a dis­trac­tion,” his let­ter read.

“I will con­tinue to work for the peo­ple of my elec­torate as Mem­ber for Auburn un­til the elec­tion.”

The ALP re­leased a state­ment shortly af­ter con­firm­ing the party had ac­cepted his res­ig­na­tion.

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