NSW Treasurer Gladys Berejiklian has stated on Facebook that she will run for Premier after Mike Baird announced his intentions to resign from the post – and retire from politics – next week.
Baird explained his decision at a media conference, earlier today, citing the ‘strong personal cost that comes with public life’ along with the ‘serious health challenge’ currently being faced by his father, who has undergone heart surgery, his mother, who has muscular dystrophy, and sister, who is undergoing cancer treatment.
In a statement, he described the ‘tremendous honour’ of serving as premier, adding that he was proud of what he and predecessor Barry O’Farrell, along with MPs Andrew Stoner, Troy Grant and John Barilaro plus their teams, had achieved in power over the past six years.
“We have repaired the State budget(external link), rejuvenated the economy, created jobs in unprecedented numbers, boosted frontline services and unleashed an infrastructure boom in Sydney and the regions, which everyone can see with their own eyes,” Baird said.
“I have always stressed that sound management of the budget and balance sheet is not done for its own sake. As well as enabling us to improve services and infrastructure, it allows us to protect the vulnerable. Among other achievements in this area, I am proud of the extra resources we have been able to direct towards our neediest schools (as the first State to sign up to the Gonski agreement); towards those with disability and their carers (as the first State to implement the NDIS(external link)); and towards vulnerable families, including through additional support for our FACS caseworkers.
“Next week there will be a Liberal party-room meeting and a spill of leadership positions. Following that meeting, I will resign from Parliament, effective immediately.”