The UK Independence Party (UKIP) has today announced that it is promoting its Members of the European Parliament Diane James and William Dartmouth to the positions of Deputy Chairmen.
The new appointments will mean that Suzanne Evans, a London media favourite, no longer has a national spokesman role for the party, and Neil Hamilton is likely to place top amongst UKIP members in Wales for the Welsh Assembly elections in May.
UKIP leader Nigel Farage said today: “We have an important set of elections on May 5th in which UKIP can make some significant breakthroughs. But at the same time we have to fight a referendum campaign and our frontline spokesmen need to be free to comment and campaign on the main issues.
“Accordingly I have made some changes to our structure today.
“Both of our Deputy Chairs are candidates in the upcoming elections and this will limit any role they can play in the national referendum campaign.
“So I thank Suzanne Evans and Neil Hamilton for their time as Deputy Chairs and announce they will be replaced by Diane James and William Dartmouth.
“Diane will have responsibility for speaking on the issue of security in the campaign and William on trade and jobs. I know that both are free to campaign on a full time basis.”
Ms. Evans no longer holding a position with the party is also problematic for the ‘Vote Leave’ campaign who have been trumpeting her support as their UKIP “cross party” backing. Now they are limited to one Member of Parliament, one Member of the European Parliament, and one member of the National Executive Committee.