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Natasha Fyles, Northern Territory Chief Minister, Resigns Over Mining Shares

The Northern Territory Chief Minister, Natasha Fyles, has resigned, amid allegations over her shares in South32, a company that operates a Groote Eylandt mine.

Despite community concerns, Fyles had declined to investigate air pollution levels at the manganese mine.

Fyles, 45, has been Chief Minister since May 13, 2022. She replaced Michael Gunner and the ALP will now need to elect its third leader during this parliamentary term. The next territory election will be held on August 24, 2024.

Fyles held a brief press conference in Darwin, claiming that resignation was the “honourable” thing to do. She claimed that the shareholding in South32 was small and arose out of a BHP demerger. She conceded not declaring it was unacceptable, despite it being an unintentional error.

Fyles’s voice broke as she recounted the funeral of her father-in-law and the reaction of her children to her decision. She said she would remain in parliament as the member for Nightcliff. She left the press conference without taking questions.

Watch Fyles’ resignation press conference (4m):

The Chief Minister’s resignation caps a remarkable 21-month period in which the leadership of the federal government, all six states, and one of the two territory governments has changed. Only three of the eight changes were as the result of an election.

The ACT Chief Minister, Andrew Barr, is now the only head of government who came to office prior to March 21, 2022. Barr became Chief Minister on December 11, 2014. His term of office currently exceeds the combined total of the other eight heads of government.

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Malcolm Farnsworth
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