Jacinda Ardern was officially replaced on Wednesday (January 25) as New Zealand’s prime minister, after her announcement to step down from the position last week. At a ceremony in Wellington, the country’s capital, 44-year-old Chris Hipkins was sworn in as prime minister by New Zealand’s governor-general.
This is the biggest privilege and responsibility of my life,” Hipkins said after formally taking office.
“I’m energized and excited by the challenges ahead,” he added.
After leading the nation through a series of natural crises, its worst-ever terrorist attack, and the Covid-19 outbreak, Ardern said last week that she no longer had “enough in the tank.”
Earlier on Wednesday (January 25), she made her final public appearance as prime minister, leaving the iconic Beehive parliament building to a spontaneous wave of applause from hundreds of spectators.
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One of the first to express gratitude to Ardern was Prince William. During her five years in office, Ardern rose to become a leading figure in progressive politics around the world.
“Thank you Jacinda Ardern for your friendship, leadership and support over the years, not least at the time of my grandmother’s death,” he wrote on his official Twitter account.
(With inputs from agencies)
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