New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern pays for groceries of mum who forgot purse

WELLINGTON • New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has confirmed that she paid for a harried mother's groceries, a gesture sure to enhance a reputation already soaring because of her response to the Christchurch mosque attacks.

Ms Ardern was reluctant to discuss the incident, revealed on social media involving a mother of two who was ahead of the Prime Minister at a supermarket checkout when she realised she did not have her purse.

"(Ardern) paid for my friend's shopping in the supermarket the other day when she had forgotten her purse and had two screaming kids in tow," Twitter user Helen Burness posted, adding: "Like we didn't love her enough."

Ms Ardern swiftly wrapped up a media appearance yesterday when asked why she had helped the woman, replying only: "Because she was a mum."

The 38-year-old gave birth to her daughter Neve last June.

She has won widespread praise for her response to the March 15 Christchurch attacks in which a white supremacist gunman is accused of killing 50 Muslims in an atrocity that shook the normally peaceful nation. The New Zealand Herald has described her actions as a mix of "solace and steel" after she donned the hijab while comforting devastated families and also moved swiftly to tighten gun laws.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 05, 2019, with the headline 'Ardern pays for groceries of mum who forgot purse'. Print Edition | Subscribe