Former East Renfrewshire MP Jim Murphy has announced he will resign as Scottish Labour leader next month — prompting questions on who will replace him.
The long-standing East Ren representative lost his Westminster seat to SNP candidate Kirsten Oswald at the recent general election, with 19,295 (34 per cent) of the vote against Oswald’s 23,013 (40.6%).
Despite narrowly surviving a vote of no confidence at a meeting of the party’s national executive in Glasgow, Mr Murphy said he would tender his resignation, and that he would not be standing for a seat at Holyrood next year.
Eastwood MSP and long-time colleague Ken Macintosh paid tribute to Mr Murphy this week.
He told The Extra: “I was very disappointed for Jim personally at the result in the general election, but I am also disappointed politically that he is now standing down as the leader of the Scottish Labour Party.
“As an elected representative, as a public servant but also as a political leader, Jim’s contribution has been immense and I believe he had and has, far more to give.
“As someone who has worked alongside him for 16 years, I cannot even begin to do justice to the difference he has made to so many lives and I would simply wish to thank him for his service to East Renfrewshire and to our country.”
Deputy leader Kezia Dugdale MSP will become acting leader of the party until a successor is found.
Ken Macintosh has indicated that he is interested in the leadership position following Mr Murphy’s departure.
He added: “I am not in a position to make a formal declaration as the leadership process has yet to be agreed, but I have indicated my interest in being considered.”