Belfast: The disgraced politician wife of Northern Ireland's First Minister Peter Robinson has been dumped by her party, sources said on Saturday, as her husband faced calls to resign.
Her husband's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has terminated the membership of Iris Robinson, 60, over her financial dealings with a teenage lover.
She will vacate her seats in the British Parliament and in the Northern Ireland Assembly next week, DUP officials told the BBC and the Press Association news agency.
A party source said: "The next few days is absolutely critical for the party. We wanted to show people we were acting decisively.”
"There was no question about it, she had to go and go now. There was absolutely no sympathy for the position she found herself in."
Iris Robinson had already announced she was quitting politics because of severe depression.
She and her husband have become embroiled in a crisis after it emerged that she had secured GBP 50,000 (USD 80,000) from two wealthy developers to help her then 19-year-old lover set up a restaurant in Belfast.
Peter Robinson has insisted he knew nothing of his wife's financial dealings and has vowed to clear his name, but he is facing growing calls to resign or consider his future amid deep disquiet within the DUP.
First Published: Sunday, January 10, 2010, 09:46