Lucinda Creighton has resigned as leader of the Renua Ireland party.
The former Fine Gael Junior Minister announced her decision at a members meeting of the party in Portlaoise this afternoon.
Ms Creighton has used her resignation speech to give the new Minister for Social Protection her backing saying Leo Varadkar has the ability to bring about a new kind of leadership that has been lacking in Ireland.
The former FG minister said she was proud of the party’s achievements and described setting up the party as a remarkable journey that didn’t quite go as she expected.
“I am extremely grateful for those who made it possible, and the supporters and members across the country who shared in our common ideals.
“It’s time for me to move on from leading Renua Ireland and allow new voices to be heard.”
Creighton added: “I leave my role as party leader perhaps more humbled, but no less proud of all that we have achieved together and what can be accomplished in the future.”
The Renua party failed to vote in any candidates in the general election.
Billy Timmons former deputy leader of Renua has said her decision has not come as a surprise - but he hopes Ms Creighton returns to politics: “Unfortunately we didn’t have electoral success.
“Under the rules of our party the leader has to be an elected representative, so there will be a new leader selected.
“Lucinda has intermitted on a few occasions that she would step aside, but I would like to wish her well, she is a tremendous loss.
“I would hope that in the not too distant future, that she will return to politics in some capacity.”