Steven Woolfe may have lost his chance to succeed Nigel Farage as UKIP leader, by missing the deadline to submit his nomination by just 17 minutes.
The MEP for the North West blamed technical issues with the website used to submit nominations, claiming he sent the application 25 minutes before the noon deadline on Sunday 31 July.
Mr Woolfe appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on 8 August, saying: “I did feel like I was in a scene from Little Britain’s ‘computer say no’.
“But at 11.35 yesterday I managed to be on the phone with my bank to prove that the £5,000 had been transferred over”.
A spokesman for the UKIP immigration spokesman told the Guardian that he was still a candidate in the leadership contest, which comes to a head on 15 September.
They stated that: “Mr Woolfe was speaking to party officials responsible for handling the application process throughout this time and right up to the deadline.
“He informed them that he was having technical problems. These problems were finally resolved and the paperwork submitted”.
Candidates for UKIP leadership need to be backed by a proposer and 50 supporters from at least 10 UKIP branches, and to have been a member for the past two years.
Claims have emerged recently that Mr Woolfe was not a member of UKIP for a time in 2014, claims which he refuted outright.
The final list of candidates is expected to be announced on Tuesday 9 August.