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Jacinda Ardern RESIGNS as New Zealand's Prime Minister in emotional press conference | The Sun

JACINDA Ardern has resigned as New Zealand's Prime Minister in an emotional press conference.

Holding back tears, the Labour Party leader said "it's time" for her to step back from the role.


She said: "This has been the most fulfilling five and a half years of my life.

"I am human. Politicians are human. We give all we can for as long as we can – and then it's time. And for me, it's time.

"I know what this job takes. And I know that I no longer have enough in the tank to do it justice."

Her caucus will vote on Sunday to see if a candidate has more than two-thirds of the party's support to replace her.

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That vote will determine both a new Party leader – and a new Prime Minister.

The contest will be extended out to the wider membership if no one is able to meet the level of support needed.

During the press conference, Ms Ardern announced the next election in New Zealand would be held on October 14.

She said her decision was not due to any uncertainty her party has what it takes to beat the National Party's Christopher Luxon when it comes time for Kiwis to vote.

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Ms Ardern said: “I am not leaving because I believe we can’t win the election but because I believe we can and will.”

In her speech, she shared a message to her partner, Clarke Gayford, who was in the room with her during the announcement.

She told him: "Let's finally get married."

To her daughter, Neve, she said:"Mum is looking forward to being there when you start school next year."

In making her moving statement, Ms Ardern reflected on some of the moments in her career she saw as high points.

She said: ”In addition to our ambitious agenda that has sought to address long term issues like the housing crisis, child poverty and climate change, we also had to respond to a major biosecurity incursion, a domestic terror attack, a volcanic eruption and a one in one hundred year global pandemic and ensuing economic crisis.

"The decisions that had to be made have been constant and weighty.

”I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve achieved over the last five years in spite of the many challenges thrown at us.

"We’ve turned around child poverty statistics and made the most significant increases in welfare support and public housing stock seen in many decades."

Ms Ardern was born in Hamilton and is the daughter of a police officer and a school catering assistant.

She joined New Zealand's Labour Party and became an active member in the Young Labour movement at an early stage in her life.

When she graduated from the University of Waikato with a degree in politics and public relations, Ardern moved to London to work as a senior policy adviser to Tony Blair.

She returned to New Zealand to become the youngest MP in its parliament in 2008 where she quickly rose through the ranks to become leader of the opposition by August 2017.

Although the National party won the highest share of the vote in the 2017 general election, it did not have enough seats to govern alone.

Instead, a coalition was established between New Zealand First and the Labour Party, naming Jacinda Ardern Prime Minister on October 26, 2017.

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She is the third female Prime Minister of New Zealand and in June 2018 she became the second elected head of government in history to give birth while in office.

Ms Ardern was the first of the world leaders to arrive in London to pay respect to the Queen ahead of her funeral.

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