Jan Marijnissen Steps Down as Leader of Parliamentary Group

17 June 2008

Jan Marijnissen Steps Down as Leader of Parliamentary Group

Jan Marijnissen, SP Group Leader since the party first entered the national parliament in 1994, has resigned his post as leader. Jan, who will continue to exercise a leadership role in the broader party, as well as remaining an MP, made the announcement at a press conference this morning. “I have done the job with great pleasure for fourteen years, but the time has come to make way for a successor,” he said. “This is the best moment for that.”

Jan Marijnissen

A recurring and very painful back condition played a role in his decision.

Press conference

His precise role in the group and his areas of responsibility are yet to be decided by the new leader and the rest of the Group. For the time being, Marijnissen, a welder by trade who joined what was then a fringe left grouping three decades ago, has played a major role in building what is now the Netherlands' biggest opposition party. He is now, he says, looking forward to having more time for what he describes as “research, study and analysis on major questions such as globalisation, the ageing society and the future of the public sector.” Whatever role Jan Marijnissen now adopts, his debating skills, leadership qualities and personal popularity will continue to be a major asset to the party.

The SP parliamentarians will choose a new leader this Friday.

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