Despite persistent rumors to the contrary, Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern denied she will resign prior to the next general election.
After five years in office, the New Zealand Labour Party leader shocked the globe on Thursday by announcing she will step down by February 7 at the latest.
In October, though, government circles erupted with rumors that Ardern, then 42 years old, was about to resign.
She responded strongly to the rumors at the time and stated firmly that she will remain in office and run in the October 2023 election, despite falling poll numbers.
In a radio broadcast last October, the New Zealand prime minister said, “I’ve heard this.” This rumor has circulated throughout my five years in government.
Despite persistent rumors to the contrary, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern denied numerous times that she will resign prior to the next general election.
I have no plans to alter my position as leader, and I will not be moving. I’ve stated this numerous times on the show.
This is not the first time I’ve encountered this issue, as it also arose during the previous election.
I am the leader of the Labour Party, and I have no plans to change that.
She also refuted rumors that she and her partner Clarke Gayford were about to leave the rat race for a fresh life in rural New Plymouth on the west coast of North Island.
She continued, “While I’m here, I’d also like to dispel the rumor that I’m moving to New Plymouth; as lovely as it is, I have no plans to relocate.”
Faced with draconian Covid lockdowns during the pandemic and escalating inflation and costs, the leader has enjoyed higher support abroad than at home.
However, the Prime Minister stated that she faced similar rumors prior to the 2017 election, when a whisper campaign claimed she was too ill to serve as Prime Minister.
She continued, “I believe that reflects a time when I had an unfortunate complication with tonsillitis called quinsy.”
That was the starting point for that. In many forms, New Zealand is plagued by gossip and rumor, and I am pleased to refute such claims.
In the end, however, I hope that people will recognize me for who I am.
I’m straightforward, I confront problems as they happen, and I have the fortitude to be in politics in the first place, let alone accept this position under these extraordinary conditions.
I am physically fit for this position.
She also dispelled rumors that she and her partner Clarke Gayford (pictured) were about to abandon the rat race for a new life in rural New Plymouth on the west coast of North Island.
On Thursday, though, she acknowledged that she lacked the ‘heart and energy’ to remain in the position.
Sunday, if the Labour Party is able to elect her successor, or February 7 if the process is stretched out.
‘I am human. Political figures are human. We give our all for as long as we can, and then it is time to stop. And now is the moment for me,’ she murmured.
“I know what is required for this position. And I am aware that I no longer have the capacity to do it justice.’
Grant Duncan, a New Zealand political analyst, stated that Ardern’s departure was precipitated by a change in Labour’s leader selection process a year ago.
He stated that it was now simpler for the party to elect her replacement.
But he continued, ‘It’s also not a surprise, since although she’s done an outstanding job, she hasn’t exactly had the prime ministerial career she desired.
“This is largely attributable to the fact that Covid derailed every government in the world.”
He told ABC News, “She did a great job leading the country through that, but I believe it derailed her premiership.”
It has led to a great deal of debate and animosity towards her leadership among individuals who disapprove of certain government policies and have suffered as a result of them.
Therefore, I believe that she takes a rational decision, not only for herself but also for the Labour Party.
Jacinda Ardern’s farewell address
Being Prime Minister has been the greatest honor of my life, and I want to thank the people of New Zealand for the immense privilege of leading the country for the past five and a half years.
‘With such a privileged position comes responsibility, including the duty to recognize when you are qualified to lead and when you are not.
I have given my all to my position as prime minister, but it has taken a toll on me. You cannot and should not perform the task unless you have a full tank plus a little reserve for the inevitable unplanned and unforeseen obstacles.
“Having reflected over the summer, I’ve realized that I no longer have that little bit extra in my tank to do the work right. It’s that easy.
I spoke with the Governor-General this morning to inform her.
In addition to our ambitious agenda that sought to address long-term issues such as the housing crisis, child poverty, and climate change, we had to respond to a major biosecurity incursion, a domestic terror attack, a volcanic eruption, and a global pandemic and ensuing economic crisis that occurred once every hundred years. Constant and weighty were the decisions that needed to be taken.
I am immensely proud of what we’ve accomplished over the past five years despite the numerous obstacles we’ve faced. We have reversed the trend of child poverty and created the largest increases in social support and public housing stock in decades.
We have facilitated access to education and training while enhancing worker wages and conditions. And we’ve worked hard to make headway on matters pertaining to our national identity – I believe that educating our history in schools and celebrating Matariki as our own indigenous national holiday will make a difference for decades to come.
“And we’ve accomplished this while responding to some of the greatest threats to the health and economic well-being of New Zealanders since, arguably, World War II.”
The Labour party is in an exceptional position to contest the upcoming election. They are the most experienced crew in the country and have proven they possess the required ability to handle any situation.
“I’m not leaving because I don’t think we can win the election, but because I think Labour can and will.” For this year’s and the next three years’ difficulties, we require a new set of shoulders.
“I wish to leave New Zealanders with the belief that one can be both kind and strong, empathetic and resolute, hopeful and focused. And that you can be your own type of leader – one who knows when to leave.’