Democratic Unionist Party special adviser Andrew Crawford, who has been accused of exerting influence in the Renewable Heating Initiative (RHI) scheme, has resigned.
Party leader Arlene Foster said she accepted his resignation with regret, referring to him as a "faithful servant" to the party and to Northern Ireland.
"Andrew has felt that given what occurred yesterday and indeed today that he was becoming a distraction to the important work of his minister, but indeed he was becoming the story," she said.
"Anyone who knows Andrew Crawford knows he's a very private person and he didn't want to become the story.
"I have accepted his resignation regretfully, I have to say."
His resignation comes after Martin McGuinness resigned as Deputy First Minister over the RHI scandal that has engulfed politics in Northern Ireland in recent weeks.
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