It's a girl! New Zealand PM gives birth to first child

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern gave birth to her first child, a girl, on Thursday, Ardern said in a posting on Instagram. She's become one of few world leaders to give birth while in office.
This photo taken from New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's Instagram account yesterday shows her and her partner Clarke Gayford with their newborn baby girl at Auckland City Hospital. The baby weighs 3.31kg.
This photo taken from New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's Instagram account yesterday shows her and her partner Clarke Gayford with their newborn baby girl at Auckland City Hospital. The baby weighs 3.31kg.PHOTO: INSTAGRAM

AUCKLAND • New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern gave birth to a baby girl yesterday, becoming only the second world leader to do so while in office.

The baby, weighing 3.31 kilograms, was delivered at 4.45pm yesterday at Auckland City Hospital, Ms Ardern's office said in a statement.

It was the first child for the 37-year-old and her 40-year-old partner Clarke Gayford.

"I'm sure we're going through all of the emotions new parents go through, but at the same time feeling so grateful for all the kindness and best wishes from so many people. Thank you," Ms Ardern said.

She added on Instagram that the baby was healthy and doing well.

"We're all doing really well, thanks to the wonderful team at Auckland City Hospital," she said.

Ms Ardern and Mr Gayford, who hosts a television fishing show, had known the sex of the baby for several months, but decided to keep it secret from the public.

The Prime Minister becomes just the second leader to have a child while in power, after former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 1990.

Coincidentally, the baby was born on Ms Bhutto's birthday.

Ms Ardern, who refused to discuss plans for motherhood during the election campaign, waited until January to reveal on Facebook that she had conceived and was going to be "prime minister and a mum".

Ms Ardern plans to take six weeks leave from Parliament.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, BLOOMBERG

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 22, 2018, with the headline 'It's a girl! New Zealand PM gives birth to first child'. Print Edition | Subscribe