New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Thursday that she will step down as prime minister as she is not seeking reelection.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern leader of the Labor Party in February said she will not be seeking re-election this year. Ardern’s last day as prime minister is Feb. 7.
Her resignation will take effect on the appointment of a new prime minister. Jacinda Ardern said, after five and a half years of the top leadership role, that she could not keep going for another year or term after mindful consideration.
A caucus vote to elect a new leader will occur in three days’ time on Sunday, said a government statement. “Being prime minister has been the greatest honor of my life,” she said, citing her cabinet’s achievement in alleviating child poverty, as well as increasing welfare support and public housing stock.
Meanwhile, New Zealand’s 2023 General Election will be held on Oct. 14, 2023, Jacinda Ardern announced, adding the Labor team is “incredibly well placed” to contest the next election.
Jacinda Kate Laurell Ardern
Jacinda Kate Laurell Ardern was born 26 July 1980, is a New Zealand politician who has served as the 40th prime minister of New Zealand and leader of the Labour Party since 2017. A member of the Labour Party, she has been a member of Parliament (MP) for Mount Albert since 2017. On 19 January 2023, Ardern announced she would resign as Labour leader and prime minister by 7 February.
Born in Hamilton, Ardern grew up in Morrinsville and Murupara. She joined the Labour Party at the age of 17. After graduating from the University of Waikato in 2001, Ardern worked as a researcher in the office of Prime Minister Helen Clark.
She later worked in London as an adviser in the Cabinet Office during Tony Blair’s premiership. In 2008, Ardern was elected president of the International Union of Socialist Youth. Ardern was first elected as an MP in the 2008 general election when Labour lost power after nine years. She was later elected to represent the Mount Albert electorate in a by-election on 25 February 2017.
Ardern was unanimously elected as deputy leader of the Labour Party on 1 March 2017, after the resignation of Annette King. Exactly five months later, with an election due, Labour’s leader Andrew Little resigned after a historically low opinion polling result for the party, with Ardern elected unopposed as a leader in his place.
Labour’s support rose rapidly after Ardern became leader, and she led her party to gain 14 seats at the 2017 general election on 23 September, winning 46 seats to the National Party’s 56. After negotiations, New Zealand First chose to enter a minority coalition government with Labour, supported by the Green Party, with Ardern as Prime Minister. She was sworn in by the Governor-General on 26 October 2017. She became the world’s youngest female head of government at age 37.
She gave birth to her daughter on 21 June 2018, making her the world’s second elected head of government to give birth while in office (after Benazir Bhutto).
Ardern describes herself as a social democrat and a progressive.