UKIP Uncovered
What motivates the leaders of the United Kingdom Independence Party?

Tuesday, February 01, 2005 

Damian Hockney's Resignation Letter to UKIP Members

Dear UKIP Member,

It is with a deep sense of regret that I announce my resignation from UKIP. I have been a party member for eight years and have not taken this step lightly. It would be pointless to go through all the events which have led to my decision, and I have determined that once outside the party I shall not become involved in criticising individuals, or any form of name calling. After today, I will simply not be drawn into a public row of accusation and counter-accusation.

You may have seen that in the past 48 hours the UKIP leadership has put out at least four different statements making highly personalised attacks upon me. Press releases from the Party Leadership attacking me are based upon false information. The minutes of several meetings of the NEC were falsified, a matter which the Party Secretary refused to investigate or even respond to. They now rely upon these falsified minutes to attack me in public. The minutes secretary himself complained about the party leadership doctoring the minutes. This situation is symptomatic of what has gone wrong within UKIP. And of course there is the fact that the leadership have accused me of being "an MI5 agent", "a Tory mole" and "a BNP plant", sometimes in the same sentence. You may remember that I was obliged to stop all this by taking legal action.

The past two years have seen a slow erosion of my trust in UKIP’s leadership, culminating in their disastrous handling of Robert Kilroy-Silk and the failure to hold an EGM on the leadership issue, against the wishes of ordinary members. The failure to organise a credible General Election campaign has also obviously been a serious concern, and also the "Roadmap to Independence" which appeared to me to be a roadblock to leaving the EU, an unnecessary series of hurdles. I joined UKIP because if we were elected we would take Britain out of the EU. I could not accept this qualification of our aims, introduced by the party leadership. No wonder it caused an outcry within the party. Indeed it was the sound instincts of UKIP members at grass roots that kept me in the party in this difficult period. I knew that they felt instinctively the way that I did.

I now believe that the only way forward for the anti-EU movement is a new professionally run party, determined to fight the election effectively and untainted by the mistakes of the past. Happily such a party now exists – Robert Kilroy-Silk’s Veritas.

As of today, I will be directing all my efforts and energies to fighting the election for Veritas. I have no ill-feeling towards UKIP members, and will avoid all public criticism of the party. I made none in my appearances on the TV news programmes on Sunday announcing my decision to resign. I have great respect for the vast majority of UKIP's members, and wish to remain on good terms with them. From now on our only enemies are the three main pro-EU parties, and I promise to do everything I can to ensure the anti-EU movement has a voice in Westminster. I am sure I will be working with you in future.

You may also be aware that many others will be joining me, including the party's other Assembly Member Peter Hulme-Cross. They will be writing to you themselves in the next few days.

Kind regards
Damian Hockney, former Leader of the UKIP Group on the London Assembly

posted by Martin |3:54 PM
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