Political milestones for women after New Zealand PM gives birth

23 June, 2018, 14:20 | Author: Donnie King
  • Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern worked up until she went into labour

Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters was now acting prime minister and would run the country for the next six weeks while Ardern took maternity leave, the statement said.

Ardern, 37, took office previous year.

Announcing the pregnancy, Ms Ardern said she would be "PM and a mum", while Mr Gayford, a television presenter for a fishing show, will be "first man of fishing" and become a stay at home dad.

New Zealand has long had a progressive reputation and was the first country to give women the right to vote in 1893 and Ardern is the country's third female prime minister. The girl arrived at 4:45 p.m. weighing 3.3 kilograms (7.3 pounds).

Her due date was Sunday 17 June.

She thanked everyone for their kindness and said they were all doing well, and also thanked the team at the hospital.

Benazir Bhutto gave birth while serving as Pakistan's prime minister in 1990, in a totally different political climate, where her opponents used her pregnancy as a reason to demand her dismissal.

The birth capped an eventful year for Ardern who became prime minister last October, three months after inheriting the leadership of the Labour Party when it was languishing in the polls.




New Zealand First MP Ron Mark says, "My thoughts are with her and Clarke at this very exciting time".

Journalists maintained a day-long vigil outside the hospital after Ms Ardern was admitted early on Thursday, until the birth announcement came. "I am not the first woman to multitask".

Jacinda Ardern has cancelled a planned Friday media appearance with her newborn daughter after a rough first night as a mum.

She plans to take six weeks off work.

In this May 22, 2018, file photo, New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addresses Parliament in Wellington, New Zealand.

Prior to her, Queen Elizabeth II gave birth to Prince Andrew in 1960 and Prince Edward in 1964 after her ascension to the throne in 1952.

"None of us in the cabinet virtually knew that this prime minister was about to deliver a baby", Javed Jabbar, a member of her cabinet, told the BBC recently.

"New Zealanders are incredibly generous people and have been generous in their support of me regardless of the politics just as another human being going into a new stage of life".

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