Published: Tue, June 26, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

New Zealand leader to spend 3rd night in hospital with baby

New Zealand leader to spend 3rd night in hospital with baby

"I won't forget the look on Jacinda's face when she finally held the baby", Gayford said.

The name is derived from the Irish name Niamh, which means bright, radiant and snow, Arden told reporters at Auckland Hospital.

Ardern explained Te Aroha was a rural town in the Waikato region of New Zealand where her family is from. She'd earlier said the quest to come up with a name had been going "terribly".

Ardern answered questions with a broad smile while rocking Neve back and forth as she slept.

"Te Aroha was our way of reflecting the amount of love this baby has been shown even before she even's also the place where all my family are from and I grew up under that mountain".

"We're not placing any great expectations on this baby - except happiness and love", she said.

Jacinda Ardern, who took New Zealand's top job in October, is only the second world leader to give birth while in office.

The Prime Minister's office (PMO) says the trio will depart Auckland Hospital shortly after.

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A spokesman said the message Ardern referred to from Prince Harry and Meghan was a "lovely hand-written note" that looked as if it was written by Meghan.

Ardern gave birth in Auckland Hospital, the country's largest public hospital, with Gayford at her side.

The last leader to give birth while holding office was late Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, who in 1990 gave birth to Bakhtawar.

Holding her newborn daughter, whose full name is Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford, she said she hoped that one day having a baby while leading a country would not be seen as a novelty.

"Like everyone we went through the struggle for a matter of months and we kept a shortlist of names and wanted to wait until the baby arrived", Ms Ardern said. "Sleep deprived, but super well", she said.

Ardern, who was elected leader of New Zealand's Labour Party in September 2017 before being elected prime minster, plans on taking six weeks of maternity leave. "Clarke's been as much of a role model here as I am", she said.

"New Zealanders are incredibly generous people and have been generous in their support of me regardless of the politics just as another human being going into a new stage of life".

"I hope for little girls and boys that actually there's a future where they can make choices about how they raise their family and what kind of career they have that are based on what they want and what makes them happy".

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