NT chief minister offers immediate resignation

By Anna Macdonald

Tuesday May 10, 2022

Michael Gunner
Northern Territory chief minister Michael Gunner. (AAP Image/Aaron Bunch)

BREAKING: Northern Territory chief minister Michael Gunner has made a sudden announcement of his resignation, effectively immediately. The Labor leader, 46, has been chief minister since 2016.

He made the announcement while delivering the territory’s budget speech to parliament. He was also the territory’s treasurer.

During a subsequent media conference in which he was visibly choked up, Gunner named prioritising his family as the reason he was resigning from the position.  

“I’m not going to stay in the job longer than I need just for the cheque or the ego. Forty-six is young for a pollie, but it is pretty old for a father of a newborn and a toddler. And that’s who I want to spend more of my time with now for as long as I can,” he said. 

Gunner denied he had another job lined up or that he was under investigation for anything. 

When questioned about whether he had skeletons in the closet, Gunner quipped: “The only thing I have in the closet are a lot of bad shirts I couldn’t wear while I was chief.” 

Once the chief minister returns from paternity leave, he will continue to be the member for Fannie Bay as he joins the backbench.

The outgoing chief minister thanked his colleagues and team, noting their support particularly during the COVID pandemic.

In the interim, deputy chief minister Nicole Manison will act in the role of chief minister. Gunner expressed hopes a new chief will be named by the end of the week, after a meeting on Friday. 

On Manison permanently taking on the role of chief minister, Gunner said it was up to her and the parliamentary Labor team.

Mansion thanked Gunner for his time and stated that the Labor caucus would be committed to continuing Gunner’s vision. 

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