Ronnie Turner reports on reaction to the news that Captain Terence O'Neill is to step down as leader of the Unionist Party.

A new premier of Northern Ireland will be elected at a meeting of the Unionist party on Thursday. O'Neill has also announced that, as soon as a new leader is elected, he will resign the premiership as well after six years in this role. He claims to have made his decision at the weekend. He also stated that he is not leaving politics but will be a back-bencher.

Ronnie Turner reports from Belfast. Nominations for the position can be lodged with the Chief Whip until Thursday. At the meeting, the nominees will be declared and a secret ballot will be taken. The contender with the majority of votes will be the new premier.

The two contenders for the position at the moment are Mr. Brian Faulkner and Major Chichester-Clark. Faulkner is expected to attract the support of dissidents from within the party while Chichester-Clark is expected to get the votes of O'Neill supporters.