01/31/2012 04:33 EST | Updated 04/01/2012 05:12 EDT

Saskatchewan Liberal leader calls it quits after 3 years at the helm

REGINA - The leader of the Saskatchewan Liberals has quit after almost three years at the party's helm.

Ryan Bater's letter to the party's executive says his resignation is effective immediately.

Bater, who is 33, got the job in February 2009 when he was the only one to come forward to replace outgoing leader David Karwacki (kahr-WAH'-kee).

The Liberals failed to win a seat in last fall's provincial election and Bater finished third in his home constituency of The Battlefords.

On Feb. 11, the Liberals plan to hold the first in a series of open meetings aimed at charting a course for the party's future in Saskatchewan.

The Liberals haven't held a seat in the legislature since 2003 and ran only nine candidates in the last election.