Jacinda Ardern says she will step down as New Zealand Prime Minister

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will not seek re-election and plans to step down no later than early February, she said in a televised statement on Thursday.

“I know what this job takes and I know that I no longer have enough in the tank to do it justice,” Ardern told reporters.

Ardern said her term will conclude no later than February 7, adding that she believed the New Zealand Labour Party would win the upcoming election and that a vote to elect the next Labour leader would be held on Sunday (January 22).

As the country’s youngest leader in more than a century, the charismatic 42-year-old’s response to the mass shooting by a white supremacist in Christchurch, a fatal volcanic eruption and her success with the COVID-19 pandemic has won her international praise and admiration.