New Zealand, Europe Brief News – New Zealand’s prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, has resigned and said she is quitting politics.
The unexpected announcement came as Ardern confirmed a national election for October.
Ardern said she “no longer had enough in the tank” to do the job. “It’s time,” she added.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is quitting politics. Leaving ‘no later’ than Feb 7. pic.twitter.com/hNAK3Fhi7J
— Aaron Dahmen (@dahmenaaron) January 19, 2023
“I’m leaving, because with such a privileged role comes responsibility – the responsibility to know when you are the right person to lead and also when you are not. I know what this job takes. And I know that I no longer have enough in the tank to do it justice. It’s that simple,” she said.
Her term as prime minister will conclude no later than 7 February but she will continue as an MP until the election this year.
Jacinda Ardern gives out a hug in March 2019 after the Christchurch mosque attacks. The New Zealand prime minister’s response to the killings was a defining moment in her premiership.
“I am human, politicians are human. We give all that we can for as long as we can. And then it’s time. And for me, it’s time,” she said.
Ardern said she had reflected over the summer break on whether she had the energy to continue in the role, and had concluded she did not.
Ardern became the world’s youngest female head of government when she was elected prime minister in 2017 at 37. She has led New Zealand through the Covid-19 pandemic, and a series of disasters including the terrorist attack on two mosques in Christchurch, and the White Island volcanic eruption.