“… Mark Williams, East Devon District Council’s chief executive, said: “This is a personal decision taken by councillor Thomas. From a returning officer perspective the election for the Trinity ward will continue.
“Cllr Thomas has been validly nominated to stand in the Trinity Ward and the ballot papers will show that he is standing as a Conservative candidate as this was the basis on which he was nominated. The change in circumstances does not countermand the election process and it will go ahead on May 2.
“From a chief executive perspective, cllr Thomas is the Leader of the Council and remains as such until the circumstances set out in Article 6.03 of the Council’s Constitution occur. These are that either cllr Thomas resigns as leader; is suspended from being a councillor; is no longer a councillor; is removed by resolution of the council; or another leader is elected at the Annual Council Meeting on the May 22.”