Shock and unhappiness as Pacific leaders react to Jacinda Ardern’s resignation announcement


Cook Islands PM Mark Brown and New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern at dedication of Te Reo Hotunui o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa, the Pacific Islands Memorial at Pukeahu.

The Cook dinner Islands Prime Minister Mark Brown says Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern
Picture: Dominic Godfrey / RNZ Pacific

Cook dinner Islands Prime Minister Mark Brown has paid tribute to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s time as chief, saying she led with energy, empathy and manaakitanga.

Brown is amongst a refrain of Pacific leaders who’ve despatched their good needs to Ardern after she introduced on Thursday she is stepping down from her place after six years on the job.

Brown mentioned he was stunned and unhappy to listen to the information.

He mentioned he needed to acknowledge her management, notably throughout troublesome instances such because the Christchurch terror assault.

He mentioned he was grateful for Ardern’s help throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

“New Zealand’s personal response was held up as a shining instance of how you can shield your folks. New Zealand working with our nation enabled us actually to guard our folks from Covid however secondly allowed us to shortly get again on our ft as a result of measures that we did take early on,” he mentioned.

“Her compassion and her energy of management is a legacy that I believe she’s going to go away as prime minister of New Zealand,” Brown mentioned.

Brown wished Ardern and her household the perfect of their subsequent chapter.

The deputy leader of the opposition in Fiji and NFP president Biman Prasad.

Fiji’s deputy prime minister Biman Prasad
Picture: RNZ Pacific/ Koroi Hawkins

Fiji deputy prime minister Biman Prasad mentioned the Pacific would miss the “charismatic chief”.

Prasad informed RNZ Pacific he was glad to satisfy Ardern when she visited the nation in 2020.

Beneath her management, Fiji had benefitted immensely, particularly when the nation confronted troublesome instances, he mentioned.

Ardern supplied “pressing and well timed assist to the Fijian folks throughout pure disasters and the Covid-19 pandemic”, Prasad mentioned.

Auckland University associate professor of public health Collin Tukuitonga says a new online-based system rolled out by the Ministry of Health to contact people with Covid-19 could face challenges in areas like South Auckland.

Sir Collin Tukuitonga
Picture: Ryan Anderson / Stuff

A outstanding Pacific well being professor mentioned the announcement by Ardern had come as a shock and was a loss for the nation.

Sir Collin Tukuitonga mentioned her management whereas navigating a world pandemic, financial hardships and a terrorist assault had been “large”.

New Zealand had made nice progress below Ardern, he mentioned, including he believed no different chief may do a greater job.

“New Zealand will lose its biggest asset, internationally for commerce and for worldwide credibility. We danger going backwards in well being and training notably when you think about a Luxon group or authorities,” he mentioned.

An Auckland councillor mentioned Ardern would depart behind a powerful legacy, notably for her dealing with of Covid-19.

Josephine Bartley mentioned identical to everybody else, she was “shocked” when the announcement was made.

A number of the criticism Ardern obtained throughout her tenure “crossed the road”, Bartley mentioned.

“I believe she’s finished a extremely superior job to save lots of so many lives with the Covid response. You possibly can criticise somebody based mostly on their insurance policies, based mostly on issues they’ve finished when it comes to the job they do, however folks simply went overboard, and went there on private assaults.”

Labour Celebration MPs now face a selection over who may change her as chief with the final election anticipated in October.


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