"A great global leader": Reactions pour in after Jacinda Ardern resigns as New Zealand PM (VIDEO)

Jan 19 2023, 5:32 pm

In an emotional announcement on Thursday, Jacinda Ardern said she plans to step down as prime minister of New Zealand.

Holding back tears, Ardern told reporters in a press conference that her last day would be February 7.

“I am entering now my sixth year in office, and for each of those years, I have given my absolute all,” she said.

“But I am not leaving because it was hard…I am leaving because with such a privileged role comes responsibility. The responsibility to know when you are the right person to lead, and also when you are not.”

“I know what this job takes, and I know that I no longer have enough in the tank to do it justice. It’s that simple,” she added.

The news shocked not only New Zealand, but the world.

Ardern has served two terms as prime minister, and since then she’s become an iconic leader on the global stage, known for her compassionate and action-oriented handling of the country’s worst mass shooting, and her science and health-focused response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Her admirers and critics both took to social media to share their reactions.

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau shared his well wishes in a tweet.

“The difference you have made is immeasurable,” tweeted Trudeau.

Even celebrities like P!nk chimed in.

“There will never be another like you. I wish there were,” she tweeted. “Thank you [for] showing the rest of the world what’s possible.”

Many from the Muslim community thanked Ardern for her empathetic and swift response to the mass shooting that occurred at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand.

“What I’ll always remember is how PM Jacinda Ardern’s leadership lead to New Zealand banning assault rifles and military-style semi-automatic weapons in just SIX days,” tweeted researcher Ahmed Ali.

“No greater example of what going beyond thoughts and prayers looks like.”

One person even shared a sweet response from the prime minister to a letter their 8-year-old wrote telling Ardern it’s a good idea to ban dangerous guns.

“I agree that it’s a good idea to ban dangerous guns and I know that New Zealand will be a safer place because we have done that,” the letter reads.

“I can tell from your letter that you are a kind and compassionate girl, Lucy, and I would just like to encourage you to keep spreading that kindness throughout your life.”

Others commended her for setting boundaries and knowing when to step back.

“Jacinda Ardern stepping down as NZ PM, setting boundaries for herself, and knowing when to step back is one of the biggest shows of genuine leadership I’ve seen in a while,” tweeted one person.

“It’s sad to see her go, though admirable a leader would depart when they no longer have energy to be effective (as opposed to gripping onto power),” added another.

There were many critics who were happy to see her go, claiming that she took rights away from unvaccinated citizens.

Others stood up for the politician.

“To all the misogynists rejoicing in Jacinda Ardern resigning as PM, she will go down in history as a great global leader of this century and you will go down simply as the same embarrassing sexist pig,” said one Twitter user.

What do you think about Ardern’s resignation?

Isabelle DoctoIsabelle Docto

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