In an interview with the Telegraph’s Chopper’s Podcast, Nigel Farage announced he was stepping down as leader of the Reform Party and leaving the world of politics for good.
The former UKIP leader said: “There is no going back – Brexit is done. That won’t be reversed. I know I’ve come back once or twice when people thought I’d gone, but this is it. It’s done. It’s over.”
He added: “Now’s the moment for me to say I’ve knocked on my last door. I’m going to step down as the leader of Reform UK. I’ll have no executive position at all. I’m quite happy to have an honorary one, but party politics, campaigning, being involved in elections, that is now over for me because I’ve achieved the one thing I set out to do: to achieve the independence of the UK.”
Farage was instrumental in securing British independence from the European Union. He became the symbolic figure, not only of UKIP, which he led from 2006 until 2016 with a brief halfway pause, but of Britain’s independence movement as a whole.
As UKIP leader he put David Cameron’s liberal-leaning Conservatives under extreme pressure, eventually obliging Cameron to gamble on an EU referendum, leading to the historic Brexit vote and Britain’s seismic departure from the bloc.
On his epic political odyssey Farage clocked up two national election victories at the 2014 and 2019 European elections with two different parties, UKIP and the Brexit Party, an extraordinary achievement.
In his interview, the legendary Brexiteer was adamant he was leaving politics for good, although he will still be active in influencing the national debate around “the culture wars”. He also identified the increasing influence of China in the West as something he will continue to comment on.
“I’m not packing up. I’m not off to play golf four afternoons a week and have half a bitter afterwards. That’s not happening,” Farage insisted to the Telegraph’s Christopher Hope.
“One [issue] is the extent to which the Chinese Communist Party is taking over our lives and certainly has undue influence in our country. And the other thing [is] the ‘woke agenda’ – literally the indoctrination of our children from primary school all the way through university with now a completely different interpretation of history.
“I see our communities being divided more than ever by this agenda. And I’m very worried about it. I want to fight all those things.
“I have built up over these years quite a considerable social media platform. I’ve got reach. So I want to go on influencing the debate. I want to go on changing debate. But I can do that without going out and fighting elections.”
Farage has amassed 1.6m followers on his personal Twitter account and is without a question one of the biggest political influencers in the UK.
Reflecting on Brexit, the ultimate achievement during his political career – unmatched by any of his contemporaries – he said: “Brexit was a grassroots rebellion and it was my honour to lead those grassroots. Without a single person of real influence in this country advocating leaving the EU, we still got to the stage when a referendum was called. And that is a remarkable thing.”
It certainly was.