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Jim McGovern withdraws Dundee West candidacy after 'health concerns'

The 58-year-old had been suffering health problems late last year.

Labour MP Jim McGovern is re-elected to the seat.

A former member of parliament has withdrawn his bid to be re-elected for a third term citing health reasons.

Jim McGovern has represented Labour as an MP in the constituency since 2005 but has been forced to pull out just over a month before the general election.

The 58-year-old had been suffering health problems late last year and his decision was revealed on Friday.

He told The Courier: "Following health concerns at the latter end of 2014 and continuing into 2015 the medical recommendations I have received suggest that I should not stand for re-election to parliament.

"Given my family’s concerns I have decided that I should accept those recommendations and therefore withdraw my nomination as Scottish Labour’s candidate for Dundee West."

Mr McGovern is married with two children. He was born in Glasgow, but moved to Dundee when he was nine.

He attended Lawside Academy and after leaving school became a glazier. After being made redundant, he worked as a glazier for Dundee District Council Public Works Department. He then joined the GMB Trade Union, and begin working full time as trade union organiser in 1997.

Mr McGovern also served as a councillor on Tayside Regional Council. He was a parliamentary private secretary to Pat McFadden, minister of state at the department for business, enterprise and regulatory reform however resigned during the row surrounding the privatisation of Royal Mail.

In the 2005 general election Mr McGovern took over from Ernie Ross and won 16,468 votes - beating Joe Fitzpatrick of the SNP who had 11,089 votes.

Another victory came in the 2010 election when the Labour representative beat the SNP's Jim Barrie 17,994 votes to 10,716.

Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy told STV: "My thoughts are with Jim and his family because he has been unwell for a while and he now has medical advice that he should not continue.

"He had been a stalwart for the Labour Party and the trade union movement.

"I think people of all parties are supporting him in his decision."

Tributes were also paid to the former MP on social networking site Twitter.

Candidates have until April 9 to be registered for the public going to the polls on May 7.

The other candidates in Dundee West are Chris Law for the SNP, Daniel Coleman for the Liberal Democrats, Jim McFarlane for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, Nicola Ross for the Conservative Party and Pauline Hinchion for the Scottish Green Party.

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