Hipkins set to succeed Ardern in New Zealand

New Zealand Education Minister Chris Hipkins speaks to reporters outside the Houses of Parliament in Wellington.


(Photo: dpa)

wellington Former New Zealand Police and Education Minister Chris Hipkins will succeed outgoing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. The 44-year-old is the only candidate for the leadership of the ruling Labor Party, Labor politician Duncan Webb said on Saturday. His nomination has yet to be formally confirmed by a party committee meeting on Sunday, Webb said.

Ardern, 42, who has ruled the country since 2017, made a surprise announcement on Thursday that he would retire on February 7. and said that he lacked the strength to continue. She is expected to step down shortly before Hipkins is sworn in as the country’s 41st prime minister. She will then lead the country in the elections scheduled for October 14.

At a news conference on Saturday, Hipkins described the nomination as a great privilege. “It’s also a big responsibility,” he said. He is a “hard worker” committed to leaving New Zealand in better shape than he found it. Ardern has distinguished himself during the country’s most challenging years with his calm, steady leadership. “I hope to do the same, even though we are different people,” Hipkins said.

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