PM: ’It will be tough’

Jacinda Ardern and Clarke Gayford at their first media appearance after the announcement of the Prime Minister's pregnancy. - Photo: RNZ / Dan Cook

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says she's under no illusion about the difficulty of juggling parenthood and the prime ministership.

Ms Ardern, who became prime minister in October, announced this morning, via Instagram, that she and partner Clarke Gayford were expecting a baby in June.

Deputy prime minister Winston Peters will serve as acting prime minister for six weeks once the baby is born.

Speaking to Five O'Clock Report, the Ms Ardern said after that, Mr Gayford would be full-time caregiver, but would travel with her, so that I can be present as much as I can but also make sure that I am doing my job".

She was adapting quickly, hugely excited and said a plan was formed early on to make sure they were ready.

"Like many couples who make the decision over who's carer and who's going back to work, in our circumstances it just so happens to be me.

"I'm under no illusion, it will be tough. But together we're ready and I have great support around me."

During the six weeks she would take off, there would be four sitting weeks for Parliament, but this would not affect any planned international travel, she said.

She did not see any problem with deputy prime minister Winston Peters in the role of acting prime minister.

"Minister Peters and New Zealand First are in a coalition with Labour, they sit around the Cabinet table with us ... and so this will just change who sits at the helm during that period."


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