Tuesday, August 11 2020


New Zealand's 'prime miniature' baby keeps Ardern busy

Update: June, 22/2018 - 10:07

AUCKLAND — New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern will spend a second night in hospital with her "very alert and hungry" newborn daughter who Twitter wags have dubbed the "prime miniature".

Ardern and her partner Clarke Gayford have been swamped with congratulatory messages from around the globe, including a private email from Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II.

But after becoming only the second world leader to give birth while in office, she is now facing the realities of motherhood which has seen plans for a public appearance with her baby cancelled twice.

A spokesman for her office said "everyone is doing well if not a bit tired" after Ardern spent much of her first night as a mum feeding the newborn.

"The nurses described the child as ’very alert and one hungry baby’," the spokesman added.

The baby, whose name has yet to be released, arrived Thursday afternoon,weighing 3.3 kilogrammes (7.3 pounds) and with the proud parents using social media to make the announcement.

"Welcome to our village wee one," Ardern, 37, wrote on Instagram. "Thank you so much for your best wishes and your kindness. We’re all doing really well thanks to the wonderful team at Auckland City Hospital."

It is the first child for the prime minister and her 40-year-old partner, a television fishing personality who will become a stay-at-home dad when Ardern returns to work after six weeks’ maternity leave.

Among the messages and parenting tips was sound advice from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

"Welcome to the wonderful world of parenting @jacindaardern & Clarke. Pro tip, Jacinda: Briefing notes make excellent bedtime stories," Trudeau tweeted.

The birth has dominated headlines, with New Zealand opposition leader Simon Bridges -- while passing on his best wishes -- noting that he was now in a "complete news vacuum".

New Zealand media have dissected every aspect of the birth with headlines ranging from "First Baby and politics: What the PM will want to avoid", to "Revealed. Where PM’s first baby’s hat, blanket came from" and "Birth a ’modern family’ story". — AFP

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