Home Secretary Theresa May will be appointed as the UK's new prime minister by Wednesday evening (13 July), David Cameron has announced. The outgoing premier said he would cease to be leader of the Conservative Party after chairing his final cabinet meeting on Tuesday and facing Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn at prime minister's questions (PMQs) on Wednesday.
Cameron, who first entered Number 10 after the 2010 general election, said May will have his "full support". The move comes after Andrea Leadsom unexpectedly dropped out of the Conservative leadership contest, leaving May as the sole contender.
"I'm delighted we are not going to have a prolonged Conservative leadership election campaign, I think Andrea Leadsom had made the absolutely right decision to stand aside and it's clear Theresa May has the overwhelming support of the Conservative Parliamentary party." Cameron declared.
In a statement outside the Commons following her election as Tory party leader, Mrs May praised Cameron for his stewardship of the party and country.
Mrs May also hailed Andrea Leadsom, whose shock decision to pull out of the Tory leadership race paved the way for her coronation, for the "dignity" she had shown.
Speaking outside the Palace of Westminster after her victory was officially confirmed, Mrs May promised 'strong leadership' and vowed to make a 'better Britain'.
Britain's next Prime Minister vowed to make the shock Brexit vote work for Britain: "During this campaign my case has been based on three things.
"First, the need for strong, proven leadership, to steer us through what will be difficult and uncertain economic and political times, the need to negotiate the best deal for Britain in leaving the EU and to forge a new role for ourselves in the world.'"
Mrs May added: "Brexit means Brexit and we are going to make a success of it."
The election was originally planned to run until 9 September, when a new Tory leader would be announced after a vote from the party's 150,000 members. But Leadsom dropped out after a "mothership row" and gaining the support of just 84 Conservative MPs, well below May's 199.
"The best interests of our country inspired me to stand for the leadership, I believe that in leaving the EU a bright future awaits where all our people can share in a new prosperity, freedom and democracy," she said in a 11 July statement.
"The referendum result demonstrated a clear desire for change, strong leadership is needed urgently to begin the work of withdrawing from the EU."
The 1922 Committee, chaired by Graham Brady, was set to meet with the Conservative Party board to discuss the next step in the leadership contest after Leadsom's move. But with Cameron's announcement in Downing Street this evening, May is expected to be in Number 10 by Thursday.