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Australia Rob Stokes puts his hand up to take over as NSW Premier

10:50  02 october  2021
10:50  02 october  2021 Source:   9news.com.au

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Planning Minister Rob Stokes has thrown his hand up to take over as NSW Premier, a day after Gladys Berejiklian sensationally resigned from office.

Contenders line up to take on the top job Contenders line up to take on the top job

Ms Berejiklian announced her shock resignation in response to an investigation by anti-corruption watchdog ICAC.

ICAC will investigate any "position of conflict" between her professional role and her private relationship with Wagga MP Darryl Maguire, then a member of state parliament.

READ MORE: ICAC faces huge test after sparking Gladys Berejiklian's resignation

Gladys Berejiklian announced yesterday she will be resigning as NSW Premier and from the NSW Parliament due to an investigation by ICAC. © Dominic Lorrimer Gladys Berejiklian announced yesterday she will be resigning as NSW Premier and from the NSW Parliament due to an investigation by ICAC. A note left on a bunch of flowers outside Ms Berejiklian's home. © Getty A note left on a bunch of flowers outside Ms Berejiklian's home.

Mr Stokes paid tribute to his colleague today. He has been described as a key ally of Ms Berejiklian.

Rob Stokes is the hot new contender for NSW premier

  Rob Stokes is the hot new contender for NSW premier As the battle to replace Gladys Berejiklian as NSW premier begins, one of the top contenders has promised not to change the state's lockdown exit plan if elected by his peers. Ms Berejiklian announced her resignation on Friday after the Independent Commission Against Corruption disclosed the 51-year-old was under investigation for potential breaches of public trust.She will also resign from parliament as soon as a by-election for her north Sydney seat of Willoughby can be held.Ms Berejiklian will remain premier until the Liberal Party elects a replacement.

"Gladys Berejiklian has been an outstanding Premier of NSW. She had led our state through some of the most challenging events in living memory," Mr Stokes said in a statement.

Bunches of flowers have been left at her house in the electorate she served for nearly two decades. © Getty Bunches of flowers have been left at her house in the electorate she served for nearly two decades.

"The people of NSW know that they could not have elected a more hard-working person to lead our state. When bushfires raged and the pandemic worsened, they placed their trust in Gladys – and she delivered."

He said his "track record" during his time in office makes him "the best candidate to lead the NSW Government".

"I also believe the party room should have a choice when selecting its next leader, and I believe I provide that choice," he said.

"I have the right balance of experience, vision and integrity needed during this crucial time in our history, as we continue to respond to and recover from the pandemic."

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Mr Stokes said he has asked his colleagues for their support.

The part room is expected to meet on Tuesday.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet is also a frontrunner to take over the top job.

9News understands he has the numbers to win.

Dominic Perrottet appears to be the likely candidate to take over the role. © SMH Dominic Perrottet appears to be the likely candidate to take over the role.

When Ms Berejiklian ran unopposed for premier in 2017, the conservative faction of the party said it would support her so long as Mr Perrottet was her deputy.

Mr Perrottet has served as Treasurer since 2017, a senior position for a young man. In spite of his experience, Mr Perrottet is 39-years-old.

"I'll obviously speak to my colleagues and I'm having a chat to my family now and we'll work it out over the weekend," he said.

Minister for Jobs and Tourism Stuart Ayres is also reportedly angling for the position.

Dominic Perrotet, Stuart Ayres, Rob Stokes and Matt Kean could all be the next premier of NSW. © Nine Dominic Perrotet, Stuart Ayres, Rob Stokes and Matt Kean could all be the next premier of NSW.

From the moderate faction, Mr Ayres, 40, represents the seat of Penrith in Sydney's west.

Matt Kean, the Minister for Energy and the Environment, and an ally of Ms Berejiklian, may also throw his hat in the ring.

He describes himself as an "outspoken critic on climate denialism", and has championed greater action on climate change.

Is the likely surge in Covid cases after NSW's freedom day a worry? .
Daily Covid cases have been the most talked about figure throughout the pandemic and could skyrocket with millions of people in NSW mingling in offices, pubs, restaurants, bars from October 11.Health experts Daily Mail Australia spoke to agreed new infections could soar in NSW once restrictions are lifted on October 11, but said a sharp rise in cases would not mean the state should be thrown back into lockdown.

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