East Belfast MP Gavin Robinson has expressed his “full support” for fellow MP Sir Jeffrey Donaldson to become the next leader of the DUP.
Sir Jeffrey has confirmed he will run against Stormont Agriculture Minister Edwin Poots to replace Arlene Foster at the helm of the party.
He made his announcement at Mr Robinson’s constituency office on Monday, which Stormont Junior Minister Gordon Lyons attended.
Later Mr Robinson tweeted his backing for Sir Jeffrey.
“I’m delighted Sir Jeffrey Donaldson has announced he intends to stand as DUP party leader and as the leader of unionism on this our centenary day,” he said.
“As I discuss our vision for the future in the coming days with colleagues, he will have my full support.”
A small electorate, comprising just the party’s MLAs and MPs, will decide the leadership contest.
Mr Poots’ campaign manager, Paul Frew, said Mr Poots had received the backing of the majority of the party’s MPs and MLAs.
However, it is understood that Sir Jeffrey’s camp dispute that and expect further endorsements to emerge in the coming days.