The governor of Italy’s Lazio region has stepped down.
Renata Polverini is the latest political casualty in a financial scandal that has enveloped Lazio and already led to three parties that make up the opposition walk out of the regional parliament.
The 50-year-old was elected two years ago and is a member of Silvio Berlusconi’s People of Freedom (PDL) party.
“It’s the first time since 1970 that a governor who has done nothing wrong has resigned, but I do it with my head held high,” she said.
Allegations that her party misused funds broke earlier this month with the regional chief of the PDL, Franco Fiorito, placed under investigation.
It is alleged he spent hundreds of thousands of euros from the party coffers for his own benefit. He has offered to pay back 400,000 euros and said other party members behaved worse than he did.
Polverini’s resignation has heaped further pressure on Silvio Berlusconi who has hinted he may mount a political comeback in the country’s elections due next year.