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Act names fresh leadership team

Published: 3:08PM Sunday February 02, 2014 Source: ONE News

The Act Party is welcoming a new beginning, with the election of a fresh leadership team.

Jamie Whyte will lead the party when John Banks steps down in March, while David Seymour will be the next candidate for Epsom.

However, the vote has come at a hefty financial cost with the loss of their party president and major party fundraiser John Boscawen.

Mr Boscawen says he told board members, before the vote, that he would quit as party president and stop fundraising if he did not get both positions.

He now says he will need to consider if he continues to contribute financially.

"I'll look at how they go but what I have made clear to the board is that my money is one issue but what I won't do is go out and ask people to support something that I didn't think was the best option."

Since joining the Act Party in 1995 John Boscawen has sunk around $250,000 of his own money into the party and raised much more.

"Richard Prebble said 'whoever runs the Act Party is going to need to raise a million dollar for the election campaign' and one of the things I guess going in my favour is I have actually done that for the last four elections," says Mr Boscowen.

Mr Boscawen had a ringing endorsement from Prime Minister John Key and an unblemished parliamentary record but has been associated with Act's old guard.

The party faces an uncertain future with Mr Banks set to stand trial for knowingly filing a false electoral return. He will quit the leadership in March and politics at the general election.