News of the sudden resignation of the Prime Minister of New Zealand. Last Minute WORLD, CURRENT headlines and events
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced she is stepping down and will not run for a second term. Ardern, in a surprise statement, said he decided to resign because he did not have the strength to govern the country.
During his speech, Ardern experienced emotional moments: “I was hoping to find a way to prepare not only for next year, but also for the new semester. Because that’s what we need this year. But I couldn’t do it,” he said.
Ardern continued: “After this decision, there will be a lot of discussion about what the “real” reason is, I know that. The only interesting thing you will see is that after 6 years of great struggle, I became human. Politicians are people. We give what we can while we can, and then time runs out. Time is up for me too.”
Ardern was the world’s youngest female head of government at 37 when she first took office in 2017.
A passionate advocate for women’s rights, children’s rights, poverty alleviation and economic equality from the very first terms of her mandate, Ardern created a new political wave in her country.
While stating that he did not make the decision to resign because of the difficult role he has taken on, Ardern stressed that he “believes that others will do a better job.”
Ardern, who gave birth 8 months after taking office, became the second Pakistani leader-elect to give birth while in office, after former leader Benazir Bhutto.
Ardern, who has been praised both in her country and on the global political stage for her progressive views and sensitive approach, called the 2019 armed attack on two mosques in her country that killed 51 people a “terrorist attack” and quickly reformed Gun law immediately after the attack.
Ardern’s decisive and consistent steps in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic were among the outstanding achievements of the young politician during his tenure as prime minister.
On the other hand, public support for Ardern declined as inflation reached its highest level in years in New Zealand as well as the rest of the world. While polarization increased in the country, especially in water infrastructure and agriculture, support for Ardern and the Labor Party waned even more.
Reaction to Ardern’s resignation
After Ardern announced his decision to step down today, many politicians and the public, including world leaders, showered him with thanks.
Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said: “Ardern has shown how powerful leadership is empathy and vision.”
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a message to Ardern: “The difference you’ve created is unpredictable.”
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who said he exchanged written messages with Ardern after the decision was announced, said: “I think he is a very strong leader, not only in New Zealand, but also in the region and in the United Nations.”
European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde, who said she understands Ardern’s decision to step down, said: “I think she is a great leader and a very brave woman.”
Who will be the new prime minister?
The ruling Labor Party is expected to vote on a new leader on Sunday. The leader, who is elected within the party, will serve as prime minister until the October 14 general election.
Emphasizing that he believes in his party’s victory in the next election, Ardern will formally leave office on February 7.
Grant Robertson, who is now Treasury Secretary and Deputy Prime Minister, has announced that he is not a candidate for his party’s new leader.
Support for the ruling Labor Party fell from 40 percent at the start of 2022 to 33 percent at the end of the year, according to a poll released in December. This means that Labor may not retain a majority even if they form a coalition with the Green Party, which receives an average of 9 percent of the vote.
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