Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced her resignation on Wednesday Feb. 15.
The 52-year-old was elected in 2014 and became the first woman leader of Scotland.
Sturgeon has denied her resignation has anything to do with the “latest period of pressure”, including backlash over the recent gender reform bill, which would make it easier for Scottish people to self-identify their gender.
During her speech, Sturgeon said that she has had doubts about continuing as first minister of Scotland for some weeks.
“I get up in the morning and I tell myself, and usually I convince myself, that I’ve got what it takes to keep going and keep going and keep going,” she said. “But then I realize that that’s maybe not as true.”
Sturgeon said she had questioned whether remaining was the best choice for herself, the country, party, and the Scottish independence movement.
“In my head and in my heart I know that time is now. That it is right for me, for my party and for the country.”
She added that the independence movement is at a “critical moment” and it needs a new leader “to reach across the divide in Scottish politics”.
Sturgeon said she would remain as the leader of Scotland until her Scottish National Party chooses a successor, which is likely to happen at a party conference next month.
As the longest serving Scottish first minister, she has led the country through the COVID-19 pandemic, become the head of the independence movement and advocated for education and transgender rights.
Sturgeon, who has been active in Scottish politics for more than 20 years, has led the country through some of its most troubling times, according to Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar.