'Please don't vote for me!' By-election plea as Newport candidate quits campaigning
A would-be councillor who has decided he no longer wants to stand for an upcoming by-election in Newport may still get elected - because it is too late legally for him to withdraw.
Voters will be able to offer their support for a prospective councillor in an upcoming Newport by-election – despite the candidate no longer wanting to stand.
Andrew Griffin was standing in the election for Newport South as an independent councillor, but announced his intention to stop campaigning in the area.
But election law means he will appear on the ballot anyway, and could be elected if he receives enough votes.
Mr Griffin said: "It’s with a heavy heart that I’ll no longer be campaigning in this election for various reasons.
"I've decided to stop campaigning as I can no long withdraw."
Mr Griffin said that if he does win the election he will remain in the position.
"I’m aware my name will remain on the ballot and that voters may still choose to vote for me," he said.
"In the highly improbable event that enough do this and I get elected, I will take the place as it would be wrong to have yet another election."
In announcing that he would stop campaigning, Mr Griffin backed fellow candidate Nick Garvey.
"A genuine locally focussed guy who will work hard for his residents," he said.
Electoral commission guidance says that candidates in the by-election had until 4pm on July 5 to withdraw their intention to stand.
But because Mr Griffin decided to step down after that, he will still legally be standing.
Other candidates will include Mr Garvey of St George way for the Liberal Democrats, Sarah Branton of Audley Park for Labour, Wendy Hesbrook of Sandiford Crescent for the independents and Sarah Pearson of Chetwynd Manor for the Conservatives.
The election will be held in the town on August 1.
It is being held after a newly elected councillor stood down just weeks after the last election in May.
Jonathan Dix, who was elected to Newport Town Council on May 2, resigned his role due to work commitments.