Nigel Farage’s decision to resign as the leader of Ukip has prompted anger among critics who say he will not be held accountable for his role campaigning for Brexit.
The politician said in a speech he “couldn’t possibly achieve more” but added: “I want my life back, and it begins right now.”
Venting their frustration on Twitter, the 52-year-old MEP was accused of cowardice for leaving frontline politics while the country grapples with the nature of the UK’s exit from the European Union.
For many, his decision to stand down compounded their anger at Boris Johnson’s announcement he would not stand in the Conservative Party leadership contest.
Bethan Cansfield tweeted: “Both Boris Johnson & Nigel Farage led the UK into the disastrous Brexit and then jump ship - absolute cowards.”
Mr Farage was Ukip Leader from 2006 to 2009 and a second stint from 2010 to the present day.
He said he never wanted to be a “career politician” and briefly stood down as the party’s leader after the 2015 election, having promised to resign if he failed to win the South Thanet parliamentary contest.
Mr Farage said: "I have decided to stand aside as leader of Ukip. The victory for the Leave side in the referendum means that my political ambition has been achieved.
"I came into this business because I wanted us to a self-governing nation, not to become a career politician.
"Ukip is in a good position and will continue, with my full support to attract a significant vote."
In recent months, his relationship with Ukip’s only MP, Douglas Carswell, has deteriorated significantly.
The MP for Clacton slammed the pro-leave poster endorsed by the Ukip, which showed Syrian refugees queuing to enter Slovenia.
In response to Mr Farage’s resignation announcement, Mr Carswell tweeted a smiling emoji wearing sunglasses.
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