Phelps drops out of Sydney lord mayor race

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High-profile doctor and former federal MP Kerryn Phelps has withdrawn her bid to become Sydney lord mayor due to an illness in her family.

Dr Phelps, who briefly held Malcolm Turnbull's seat of Wentworth in Sydney's east as an independent, announced in February said she would challenge Sydney's long-serving Lord Mayor Clover Moore.

"I am sad to have to announce that I will not be nominating for the position of Lord Mayor for the City of Sydney in the September 2021 election," she said on her Facebook page on Sunday night.

"I need to be present over the coming months to help manage a health issue for a close family member.

"I am devastated at the timing as I have been working towards this election for the past five years, but my priority must be my family."

She will continue as an independent councillor on the City of Sydney Council until the completion of her term in September.

Dr Phelps was on Ms Moore's team in 2016, serving as her deputy but quit the following year.