Watch: TV presenter stunned as Nigel Farage breaks huge promise just one hour after win
Published 24/06/2016 | 14:21
NIGEL FARAGE has admitted that it was a "mistake" to promise that £350million a week would be spent on the NHS if the UK backed a Brexit vote.
Speaking just an hour after the Leave vote was confirmed the Ukip leader said the money could not be guaranteed and claimed he would never have made the promise in the first place.
The pledge was central to the official Vote Leave campaign and was controversially emblazoned on the side of the bus which shuttled Boris Johnson and Michael Gove around the country.
Campaigners promised to use the money the UK reportedly sends to the EU to fund the health service instead.
Asked by ITV's Good Morning Britain whether he could guarantee that the £350m that was sent to the EU would now go the NHS, Mr Farage said: “No I can’t, I would never have made that claim.
"That was one of the mistakes made by the Leave campaign.”
Later, Mr Farage called for a national "Independence Day" holiday to celebrate the historic vote.
"It's been a huge exercise in democracy," he told Radio 4's Today programme.
Mr Farage spoke of his delight at the success of his campaign, adding: "The first time I appeared on this programme was 17 years ago and we were considered a joke party, with a manifesto for the mad and bad. Now 17 million people have voted for us and I couldn't be more delighted."
Mr Cameron's future is in doubt, the Ukip leader added.
"I think it's very difficult for him to stay on as Prime Minister given that he involved himself so heavily in the campaign, told us that dreadful things would happen to us if we were to leave - recession, threats of war, the rest of it.
"I find it difficult to believe that he could become a Brexit prime minister. I might be wrong but I doubt it.
"We don't need an election necessarily.... there are two things that need to happen - One, a Brexit prime minister and secondly a negotiating team that are going to go to Brusssels and get us a better deal."
Mr Farage said he "would love to see us out" by some point next year.
"The real opportunity from Brexit is that we have left a failing political union in Europe and we can now start to re-engage with the world," he added.
"If Cameron resigns, if we have to wait a couple of months to get a pro-Brexit Prime Minister, then so be it....Who knows we may end up with a deal with the EU that my parents thought they were voting for all those years ago - namely a trade deal."
His comments came as Dan Hannan, a Brexit-supporting Conservative MEP, suggested that Leave campaigners did not promise to "pull up the drawbridge" and warned that migration to the UK will continue despite the vote.