Deposed Australian PM Turnbull quits parliament

2018-08-31 12:34

Deposed Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull officially resigned from parliament on Friday, sparking a by-election for his Sydney seat that could threaten the government's slim one-seat majority.

Moderate Turnbull, 63, was ousted a week ago in a Liberal party coup driven by a hardline conservative faction and he indicated at the time he would not move to the backbench.

New Prime Minister Scott Morrison paid tribute to his "legacy of great achievement".

"Malcolm Turnbull's retirement draws to a close 14 years of committed service to the Australian people and his beloved electorate of Wentworth, culminating in his term as prime minister," he said.

"The Liberal Party thanks him for his commitment to our values and calm stewardship of our great institution, even in times of difficulty."

Turnbull was unseated after almost three years by a determined challenge from his own Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton, who himself lost out to a stealth campaign by Morrison, a Turnbull ally, in a party ballot.

His transition to civilian life should be smooth. Turnbull was one of Australia's wealthiest parliamentarians and he went to Canberra after previous stints as a journalist, banker, lawyer and businessman.

His departure will trigger a by-election for his Sydney seat, potentially in early October, leaving Morrison in a precarious position with no majority for two sitting weeks of parliament.

The seat is traditionally a Liberal safe haven, although a backlash against the government's political infighting could make this less certain.

Several Liberal candidates have already emerged, including former Business Council of Australia executive director Andrew Bragg and Dave Sharma, who used to be ambassador to Israel.

The Greens and Labour are also expected to field candidates.

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

Read more on:    malcolm turnbull  |  australia

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.