DUP's Luke Poots says he will not be standing in May election
DUP councillor Luke Poots has announced that he will not be standing in the upcoming local elections.
Mr Poots, who represents Downshire East on Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council and is the son of DUP MLA and former Health Minister Edwin Poots, said he had been ruminating over his future in politics.
“Over the course of this year a number of opportunities have arisen for me outside politics,” he said.
“Given that my father and grandfather represented the community since 1973 at local government level, I have struggled with making a decision on the future.
“I conveyed last week to my family that I did not intend to stand for election.
“Since then we have discussed the matter several times and I have subsequently notified the party of my intentions.”
Mr Poots said he remained a loyal member of the DUP.
He added that he will fully support the party’s candidates selected in Downshire.
He said: “It is my desire that the party goes forward and succeeds as it is the only means of securing our future within the Union.
“Excellent work is being done at Westminster and council level, and I look forward to the Assembly being restored for delivery across all areas of government to be maximised.
“I’m particularly grateful to the electorate in Downshire for giving me the opportunity to serve them, and it was immensely satisfying to have helped many people over the past six years.”
Mr Poots is currently facing a charge of driving a vehicle dangerously on Grosvenor Road in Belfast. He denies the charge.
A former chairman of Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council’s planning committee, has also faced questions over why a planning application relating to a property of his on the Comber Road in Hillsborough was made in his mother’s maiden name.
The application was submitted under Glynis Poots’ maiden name of Rachel M Gracey.
Mr Poots has previously said all relevant declarations were made regarding the planning application.