Chris Hipkins (44)
Former Corona Minister becomes the new Prime Minister in New Zealand
Former Pandemic Minister Chris Hipkins is New Zealand’s new Prime Minister. He succeeds outgoing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. The unconventional politician surprisingly announced her resignation on Thursday.
Published: 14 minutes ago
Chris Hipkins becomes the new Prime Minister in New Zealand.
The former New Zealand Minister for Combating the Corona Pandemic will become the country’s new Prime Minister. The ruling Labor Party on Saturday nominated 44-year-old Chris Hipkins as the sole candidate to succeed outgoing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern as party leader. His confirmation at a party leadership meeting on Sunday is considered a formality. The Labor leader automatically becomes Prime Minister. Ardern surprisingly announced her resignation on Thursday.
In a first reaction to his nomination, Hipkins said he considers himself “quite decisive” and “can get things done”. The prospect of his new post makes him “energetic and enthusiastic”. He was also optimistic about the parliamentary elections in October. In polls, however, Labor is lagging behind in the face of rising living costs, poverty and high crime rates.
Hipkins follows Ardern
Hipkins had received praise for his almost two-year stint as Corona Minister. The country only fully reopened its borders in August last year. Hipkins is currently in charge of the education and police departments in the cabinet. He has been a member of Parliament in Wellington for a total of 14 years.
After more than five years at the head of the government, Ardern announced her resignation on Thursday by February 7 at the latest. The 42-year-old gave the reason that she lacked the strength for more years in office.
Ardern was elected Prime Minister in 2017. She was confirmed in this office in the parliamentary elections in October 2020, and achieved a historic election victory. In all her years in government, the charismatic politician made a name for herself, above all with her sensitive crisis management. (nad/AFP)