Malcolm Turnbull has formally resigned his seat, as his successor Scott Morrison paid tribute to him as a prime minister who delivered some “very big things”.
Mr Turnbull, who first entered parliament in 2004, on Friday confirmed his resignation from the NSW seat of Wentworth in writing to Speaker Tony Smith.
Having stepped down from the Liberal leadership in the wake of Peter Dutton’s challenge, Mr Turnbull declared it was best that former prime ministers do not stick around parliament.
The Wentworth by-election, which is expected to be held in October, will be hotly contested both in terms of Liberal Party preselection and the poll itself.
“Malcolm has been a dear and close friend to me for a very long period of time and he has served his country well and grandly,” Mr Morrison told reporters in Jakarta on Friday.
“He’ll be well remembered I believe over time as a prime minister who delivered some very big things for Australia.”
Mr Morrison counts the Snowy Hydro 2.0 scheme and Western Sydney Airport among his predecessor’s proudest achievements.
He said retirement from parliament would enable Mr Turnbull to exit from the “madness of politics”.
“You deserve that mate, you absolutely deserve that. You’ve served our country well, and on behalf of our country as prime minister, I just want to say thanks.”