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UKIP leader Nigel Farage wll decide which Kent seat he intends to stand at the general election within weeks

By Paul Francis

UKIP leader Nigel Farage will end speculation about where he plans to stand as a candidate at the general election within weeks.

He has been tipped to go for the Thanet South seat but there has been speculation he may now look elsewhere in Kent after the Conservatives chose Craig Mackinlay, a former UKIP member to stand there.

Other options for the UKIP leader are understood to be the Folkestone and Hythe seat and Dover and Deal.

Craig Mackinlay MP
Craig Mackinlay MP

In his first public comments in a radio interview since the selection of Craig Mackinlay, Mr Farage emphasised he still had his eyes on Kent.

Our political editor's blog ponders where Nigel Farage may stand>>>>

“I’m not interested in who stands for the Conservative Party or the Labour Party. Thanet South is a three-way marginal.The last raw data we had from opinion polls put the parties within 2 per cent of each other. Ukip will fight Thanet South to win.”

He went on: “Just give me another couple of weeks. The European Parliament goes into recess on July 24, I will announce within a couple of weeks of that where I will stand.”

Asked if he had picked the seat where he will stand as a candidate, he added: “No.Thanet South is up there in my top two or three. I’m going to stand somewhere in the South East, more than likely in Kent.”

Craig Mackinlay, a Medway councillor, has said that his Eurosceptic credentials meant there was “no point” in Mr Farage standing.

However, Cllr Roger Latchford, who leads the 17-strong UKIP group on Kent County Council, said:

“Craig Mackinlay is trying to float his UKIP credentials but the simple fact of the matter is he is standing as a Conservative and it is just the Conservative vote he will attract. Whoever we decide should stand, we will have strong support.”

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