After 24 years in New Zealand, no single party has won a single majority. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s Labour Party registered a major victory, defying all estimates. Voting took place here on Saturday. Counting began just 90 minutes after the voting was over. Due to the early voting facility, 19 lakh voters had already voted. This is 57% of the total voters. The total number of registered voters is around 30 lakh 77 thousand.
According to New Zealand media reports, the Labour Party received 48.9% votes and a total of 64 seats. The majority figure in the 120-member parliament is 61. Judith Collins’s National Party received 27% votes and a total of 35 seats. ACT New Zealand Party got 10 seats. Official results will be announced later.
What did Ardern say?
After the victory, Ardern said – I am very happy with the results that have come today. However, I was not surprised by them, because I expected such a result. I know that the workers of my party have worked hard. We will continue our work. My daughter is two years old and she is still sleeping. I will not change my team.
The Opposition party congratulates Jacinda
The Green Party congratulated Jacinda and her Labour Party on her historic victory even before the final results, New Zealand opposition leader Judith Collins officially recognized her opponent’s victory on Saturday evening in a speech. The special thing is that after winning elections in 2017, the Labour Party formed the government along with the Green Party. The reason for this was that the Labour Party could not get a majority on its own. During the counting on Saturday, Green Party MP Marama Davidson said – heartfelt congratulations to the Labour Party and Jacinda for the victory. Our party did a good campaign. The results were not found as expected.
What the Labour Party said:
Labour MP and spokeswoman Jenny Salesa said – With the kind of skill that Prime Minister Jacinda showed in dealing with Covid-19, it seemed certain that we would get an easy and big victory. The results are in line with our expectations. Now we will be able to fulfill those promises which were not fulfilled in the previous government.
How many parties participated?
Five parties participated in this election. These are the Labour Party (Jacinda Ardern), the National Party (Judith Collins), New Zealand First (Winston Peters), the Green Party (James Shaw), and ACT New Zealand (David Seymour).
Two votes have to be cast.
New Zealand has had an MMP (Mixed Member Proportional) system since 1996. The voter gives one vote to the preferred party and the other to the candidate. Candidates can also be independents. This is the first time any single party has got a majority after the MMP came into force.
A charismatic and committed Prime Minister
Jacinda Ardern, who turned 40 this summer, nicknamed the poll the “Covid elections”, bashing her campaign thoroughly on her very solid record in the fight against the pandemic. New Zealand – five million people – has recorded 25 deaths from the coronavirus and the government’s strategy has been hailed by the World Health Organization (WHO).