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Jacinda Ardern to resign as New Zealand’s PM

Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand’s Prime Minister, is resigning.

Her last day of office will be 7 February. A general election has been called for 14 Oct.

During an emotional news conference, the 42-year-old New Zealand prime minister choked back tears.

Image Photo: AP

“I am familiar with the job and know how difficult it is. I also know that I don’t have enough fuel to do it justice. She said it was that simple.


Ms. Ardern was confronted with one of the most tragic days in New Zealand’s recent history, when a white supremacist gunman attacked two mosques in Christchurch, killing 51 people.

Her kindness and support of survivors and New Zealand’s Muslim community was widely celebrated.

During the coronavirus pandemic in the Philippines, the PM took some of the most severe measures possible. This resulted in the country having one of the lowest fatalities.

As new vaccines and variants were developed, her zero tolerance strategy was abandoned. Some critics in the country also criticized her strict policies.

Ms Ardern announced last month that a royal commission would examine whether the government took the right steps in dealing with COVID-19.

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Jacinda Adern answers the gender question

Despite her still being New Zealand’s preferred prime Minister in the polls she has seen her support drop significantly since the last election in 2020.

Ms. Ardern stated that she believes New Zealand Labour will win the next election.

She spoke out about her resignation and said that she knew there would be lots of discussion afterward as to the “real reason”.

“I can assure you that the information I am sharing with you today is true. You will only find one interesting angle: after six years of enduring some very difficult situations, I am now human.

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‘Arrogant p***k!’ NZ PM hot microphone moment

She concluded by saying, “I hope that I leave New Zealanders with the belief that you can be kind but strong, empathetic and decisive, optimistic yet focused, and also that you can have kindness.”

“And that you have the ability to be your own leader, one who knows when it is time to go.”

It is not clear who will be the next prime minister, at least until October’s elections. Grant Robertson, deputy prime minister, announced that he will not be running for any leadership positions.

Analysis: Surprise, but not surprising

Sharon Marris is a news reporter in New Zealand

This shock is felt by most New Zealanders, and many Wellingtonians.

Jacinda Ardern did not hint that she was uncertain if she would lead her party to another term in government.

Her ability to respond to crises is more important than her domestic accomplishments, which some may argue might have made a greater difference to voters.

Her decision to step down is not without other factors.

Her daughter Neve will start school later in the year. Perhaps it is too much to devote so much time to leading a nation instead of watching her child grow up.

Clarke Gayford, her partner, also has plans. They tried to get married last year but were unable to due to restrictions from the coronavirus.

As Gayford was speaking to reporters during this afternoon’s news conference, she said that she was excited about “finally” getting married.

For her colleagues in the party, Ms Ardern’s resignation allows them to start over – to run for a government for another term.


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