Invercargill MP and Deputy Speaker Eric Roy has announced he’ll be retiring at this year’s election.
Eric won the seat of Awarua in 1993, one of only two new national MPs elected that year and he became a Junior Whip.
The seat was absorbed into the new Clutha Southland electorate in 1996. Eric stood for Invercargill, was unsuccessful, but gained a list seat.
He lost that in 2002, spent three years working hard to build support in Invercargill and won the seat in 2005.
He has held it since, was appointed Assistant Speaker in 2008 and promoted to Deputy in 2011.
He survived cancer and now does a lot of work with cancer support.
Eric is at the conservative end of the national party spectrum. He has been described as a fishin’ huntin’, Christian, reflecting his love of the outdoors and outdoor sport and his faith.
He’s a good man, a very good MP and leaves big shoes to fill – literally and figuratively.
Eric has turned a red seat blue and because of that the selection for his replacement will attract a lot of interest.
It will be decided by National Party members in the electorate.