Sir Sam Neill slams ‘misogynistic’ treatment of outgoing New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern: ‘She deserved better’
Sir Sam Neill has praised New Zealand’s outgoing Prime Minster Jacinda Ardern after she announced her resignation on Thursday but took aim at the ‘misogynist’ treatment of the politician.
The New Zealand actor, who rose to international fame after starring in 1993’s Jurassic Park, insisted Ardern had ‘deserved better’ while commemorating her ‘great’ leadership.
Ardern confirmed overnight that she’ll stand down no later than February 7 while revealing she ‘no longer had enough in the tank’ to continue heading up New Zealand’s government.
Taking to Twiter shortly after news of Ardern’s resignation broke, Sir Sam, 75, tweeted: ‘#PrimeMinister @jacindaardern resigned today. I am not surprised nor do I blame her.
‘Her treatment, the pile on, in the last few months has been disgraceful and embarrassing. All the bullies, the misogynists, the aggrieved. She deserved so much better. A great leader. Thanks PM!’
Sir Sam – who was honoured with a New Zealand Order of Merit in October- wasn’t the only famous face to express support for Ardern.
In response to the news, Pink thanked the outgoing PM for ‘showing the rest of the world what’s possible’.
The hitmaker tweeted: ‘Prime Minister @jacindaardern there will never be another like you.I wish there were. You have my admiration, my respect, my well wishes for you+your beautiful family.
‘I have watched you shine uniquely+bravely from afar.Thank you 4showing the rest of the world what’s possible.’ [sic]
New Zealand actress Lucy Lawless wished Ardern luck on social media, writing: ‘I’m Wishing @jacindaardern a joyous future. A grand human being who always gives 110%. Deserves a dang big holiday before embarking on her next great adventure. Thankyou, Ma’am!’
Holding back tears, Ardern told reporters that February 7 will be her last day in the top job, with a general election called for October 14.
‘I am entering now my sixth year in office, and for each of those years, I have given my absolute all,’ she said during an emotional news conference.
‘I know what this job takes, and I know that I no longer have enough in the tank to do it justice. It is that simple.’
Ardern burst onto the global scene in 2017 when she became the world’s youngest female head of government at the age of 37.
Riding a wave of ‘Jacinda-mania’, she campaigned passionately for women’s rights, and an end to child poverty and economic inequality in the country.
Eight months after being elected premier she became the second leader to give birth while in office, after Pakistan’s Benazir Bhutto.
It is unclear who will take over as prime minister until the election.
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