Thetford UKIP councillor to resign following ‘intense focus’

Peter Georgiou, UKIP councillor for Thetford.
Peter Georgiou, UKIP councillor for Thetford.

One of Thetford’s newly-elected UKIP county councillors is set to resign.

Peter Georgiou, Norfolk County Councillor for Thetford West, will resign tomorrow, according to Denis Crawford, UKIP county councillor for Thetford East.

Cllr Crawford said he had Cllr Georgiou’s resignation letter and would be handing it to an officer tomorrow.

The resignation follows revelations in the Bury Free Press on May 24 that Cllr Georgiou had admitted being arrested for alleged theft and paying HMRC £4,000 in unpaid duty last year.

A statement from Toby Coke, leader of the Norfolk County Council UKIP group, said Cllr Georgiou had stepped down following ‘intense media and political focus on his past, that has embarrassed him and upset his family’.

“Peter has been persistently harassed over matters relating to his past that in no way prevent him from carrying out his duties as a county councillor.

“However, the constant attention from political opponents and the media has had a very detrimental effect on his morale and placed great strain on his family.

“Therefore, he has taken the decision to stand down. We hope that he can now be left alone,” he said.

Cllr Georgiou’s resignation will spark a by-election for the Thetford West division.

His win on May 2 - by just one vote - meant that UKIP became the opposition party at County Hall, taking 15 seats to Labour’s 14.

Cllr Coke said UKIP was already interviewing candidates to stand in the by-election.