Chris Hipkins, 44, is set to replace Jacinda Ardern as leader of the Labour Party and New Zealand’s prime minister after emerging as his party’s only nominee for the role.

“The Labour Party caucus will meet at 1 pm on Sunday to endorse the nomination and confirm Chris Hipkins as Party Leader,” Labour Whip Duncan Webb announced on Saturday.

Jacinda Ardern’s sudden resignation led to the Labour Party leadership contest. Ardern, who led New Zealand for five and a half years, said on Thursday that she no longer has “enough in the tank” to do justice to the country’s top job. 

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Who is Chris Hipkins?

Christopher John Hipkins or Chris Hipkins is a Labour Party politician in New Zealand. He is set to succeed Jacinda Ardern as the Prime Minister of New Zealand by February 7, 2023.

Currently, he is serving as the Minister of Education, Minister of Police, Minister for Public Service, and Leader of the House. Hipkins was first elected to parliament in 2008. He was appointed minister for Covid-19 in November 2020.

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Chris Hipkins was born on September 5, 1978, in New Zealand capital Wellington. His mother Rosemary Hipkins is the chief researcher for the New Zealand Council for Educational Research. He attended Waterloo Primary School and Hutt Intermediate.

Hipkins earned a Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in politics and criminology at Victoria University of Wellington. After graduation, he held several jobs, including serving as a policy advisor for the Industry Training Federation, and as a training manager for Todd Energy in Taranaki. He also worked in Parliament as an advisor to Trevor Mallard and Helen Clark.

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At the beginning of 2013, Hipkins became the Spokesperson for Education. He puts a strong emphasis on social justice and believes that every New Zealander should have the opportunity to reach their full potential.

He was the Labour spokesperson in Opposition since 2013 and became Education Minister when his party formed government in 2017.

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In 2020, Hipkins married Jade Marie Hipkins after a six-year-long relationship. They had their first child, Charlie,
in November 2015. Their second child was born in 2018.