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UKIP leader Diane James steps aside after 18 days on the job

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On Tuesday night, Diane James announced she was resigning as Ukip leader, just 18 days after she was elected by members to succeed Nigel Farage.

Mr Oakden said that in his mind the leader was still Ms James until someone else took over, but that the Electoral Commission may still consider Mr Farage leader if paperwork for a handover between the two was not registered.

Inheriting a party riven with factional infighting and missing its former leader, James had said she would prioritize party unity and modernize its internal structure.

James was elected to the leadership post September 16 to succeed Nigel Farage, who departed in the wake of the controversial referendum vote that spurred Great Britain to leave the European Union.

In a statement released this morning in reaction to the news, Mr Graves, who represents UKIP for Alvaston on Derby City Council, said: "UKIP is highly sad at the decision Diane James has resigned".

Diane James, who was elected leader of Ukip 16 days ago at the party's conference, has confirmed her resignation.

"Not for ten million dollars", he told the Press Association. "We thank her for all her work as leader, and as a hard-working MEP, a role she will continue with her customary vigour".

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Earlier, he told reporters: "No, I'm not coming back, I'm retired".

Nigel Farage has laughed off Ukip's leadership shambles, saying "you couldn't make it up" at the end of a broadcast interview.

Her shock resignation was prompted by a number of factors, including a lack of support from UKIP MEPs and personal attacks against her which had left her shaken.

Bookmakers have installed North-West England MEP Steven Woolfe, who was barred from standing to replace Mr Farage after handing nomination papers in 17 minutes late, as favourite to be Ms James' replacement.

Another potential contender, Lisa Duffy, the runner-up to James in the most recent election, said she doesn't rule out running again. The upstart party has only one member in the British Parliament, despite winning 12.6 percent of the total vote in the 2015 elections.

"But I can't make any decisions until we know what's happening".

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