New Zealand finance minister set to become new PM

Bill English to replace John Key who resigned after 8 years in office

New Zealand finance minister set to become new PM

World Bulletin / News Desk

Finance Minister Bill English is set to become New Zealand's new prime minister following the resignation of John Key earlier this week.

English’s two rivals for the post, Corrections Minister Judith Collins and Health Minister Jonathan Coleman, withdrew from the contest Thursday, the New Zealand Herald reported.

English thanked Collins and Coleman for a "civil, constructive" race and told reporters he would refrain from commenting on prime ministerial matters until the leadership selection process was officially completed.

"While it appears that I'm likely to have the support of the caucus on Monday, that hasn't happened. So I'm not going to be making pronouncements as an assumed leader of the party,” he was quoted as saying.

On Monday, Key announced his resignation after eight years in office, saying that "it was time to move on".

"This is the hardest decision I've ever made and I don't know what I'll do next,” he said, citing family reasons for leaving -- stating that the job of prime minister had required great sacrifices "from those who are dearest to me".

The National Party will hold a meeting Dec. 12 to decide the new party leader and prime minister.

The next general election will take place before November 2017.

Last Mod: 08 Aralık 2016, 10:55
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