The Prime Minister of New Zealand, Labor Jacinda Ardern, continues to make a difference with his way of leading the oceanic country. For his second term, which he achieved on October 17 after sweeping the polls with 49% of the votes, he has chosen a Gabinete different and that touches the parity: 40% are women, 25% represent the Maori ethnic group, another 15% the Pacific peoples ethnic group, and 15% belong to the LGTBI community.
During the ceremony in which the Government has sworn its positions, this Friday in Wellington, Ardern has emphasized that his ministers “represent New Zealand-Aotearoa“in reference to the Maori name of the country, and has assured that it will rule” for all New Zealanders. “
Of the 20 ministers that make up the Executive, five are Maori, an ethnic group to which 16.5% of the population belongs, with five ministers. Among them is Nanaia Mahuta, an expert in social anthropology and who will be in charge of the Foreign Affairs portfolio. Mahuta, with a ‘moko kauae’ -a traditional Maori tattoo- on his chin, he was sworn in this Friday in his native language.
So has Grant Robertson, who becomes the first politician who openly declared his homosexuality to occupy the position of deputy prime minister New Zealand, in addition to maintaining the portfolio of Finance, for which he was appointed in 2017 during Ardern’s first term. Two other members of the Executive belong to the LGTBI community.
Alliance with the Green Party
Other Maori representatives such as Peeni Henari, in Defense, and of the Pacific Islands, Carmel Sepuloni, in Social Development; Y Kris Faafoi justice and immigration. Likewise Priyanca radhakrishnan has become the first Indian-born woman to assume a government portfolio in New Zealand, while the Maori Mrs. Davison Y James Shaw, co-leaders of the Green Party, assume the ministries related to housing and the environment.
The Labor Party could have governed alone, having added 65 of the 120 seats in Parliament, according to official data published this Friday, but Ardern has chosen to maintain his coalition with the Greens, who won 10 deputies.
This team “has very different perspectives, talent, experience and, as in times of crisis, a huge commitment to the country,” added Ardern at the ceremony in Wellington before the Governor General, Patsy Reddy, representative of Elizabeth II in the country. New Zealand is a member of the Commonwealth and therefore heads of state is held by the Queen of England.
The prime minister has stressed that her priority is to continue fighting the pandemic and relaunch the economy, sunk by the impact of the coronavirus crisis. Likewise, it has promised to promote infrastructure projects, especially the construction of social housing and investment in renewable energy, and to draw up policies to continue reducing inequalities and poverty.
During his first term, Ardern has stood out for his good management of the covid-19 pandemic (he closed the country when there were only six cases registered and no deaths) and the tact with which he faced the massacre in the city of Christchurch in March of 2019, in which a white supremacist murdered 51 people in two mosques. In this new mandate, the most important challenge will be to continue to keep the coronavirus at bay and overcome the worst recession in the country in decades: After 11 years of economic growth, New Zealand’s GDP has contracted by 12.2% in the second quarter of 2020.
Legalization of euthanasia
In the elections on October 17, New Zealanders also voted in a referendum on the legalization of euthanasia. According to the results published this Friday, voters were massively in favor, with 65.1% in favor compared to 33.7% against. The law on euthanasia will take effect in November 2021 and will stipulate that a mentally healthy adult can ask for a lethal dose of drugs if he does incurable illness it can kill you in six months in an “excruciatingly” painful way.
Citizens of the oceanic country were also consulted about the legalization of the cannabis for recreational purposes, but in this case the ‘no’ won with 50.7% of the votes compared to 48.4% of the ‘yes’.