Wigan MP Lisa Nandy says a lack of confidence in Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership has caused her to resign from the shadow cabinet.
She joined a growing list of shadow cabinet MPs who have stepped down in the wake of Mr Corbyn’s decision to sack his shadow foreign secretary.
In a joint statement issued by Ms Nandy and her shadow work and pension secretary Owen Smith, they said: “Together with our colleagues from the centre left of the party - John Healey, Nia Griffith and Kate Green - we just met with Jeremy Corbyn to discuss the future of the our party.
We had hoped to leave that meeting with the confidence to continue to support the leadership in bringing the Labour Party together from within the shadow cabinet. During the course of the meeting it became clear this would not be possible.
“It is therefore with huge sadness that we have resigned from shadow cabinet. We have both been deeply distressed that this week of all weeks Labour has descended into infighting instead of looking outwards to the country.
“We do not believe that this is a time for internal warfare. Following the referendum result we believe we in Labour have a unique responsibility to show collective leadership to help bring the country through these difficult time.
“It has become increasingly apparent in the last 48 hours that this is not a realistic prospect in the current circumstances.
“The lack of confidence in the leadership goes beyond the small group of MPs who have consistently opposed Jeremy since his election.
“It has become clear that this is unable to form a broad, inclusive shadow cabinet that draws on the best of our movement’s left and right traditions.
“For that reason we have told Jeremy that whilst the party holds a leadership contest - which is now inevitable - we believe Tom Watson ought to take over as a caretaker leader to stabilise the party and to enable us to play a full part as the official opposition in one of the most difficult periods this country has ever faced.”