| 12°C Belfast

Arlene Foster's Spad Kim Ashton steps down after less than three months in role

Close

DUP councillor Kim Ashton

DUP councillor Kim Ashton

DUP councillor Kim Ashton

A Dungannon councillor has resigned from her role as Special Adviser to Northern Ireland’s First Minister after less than three months.

In February it was confirmed that Kim Ashton was to take up a publicly-funded role in the Executive Office as an adviser to her DUP party colleague Arlene Foster.

At the time it was revealed her salary could have been up to £54,999.

However, a statement released on Monday evening confirmed that the Dungannon councillor left the role on May 4.

“It was a great privilege to serve as an adviser to Northern Ireland’s First Minister,” said Ms Ashton.

“I stepped down last month to take up a role in the private sector and I will continue to serve the people of Dungannon as a DUP councillor.”

Thanking her for her time in the role, the First Minister described Ms Ashton as an “excellent special adviser”.

“Kim was an excellent special adviser and I give her my best wishes in her new role,” said Arlene Foster.

It is understood that there are no plans to make an appointment and that the post will remain vacant.

Belfast Telegraph