New Zealand PM gives birth

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and partner Clarke Gayford with their newborn baby girl who was born at 4.45pm on June

SUPPLIED Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and partner Clarke Gayford with their newborn baby girl who was born at 4.45pm

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's political colleagues have offered the couple their congratulations after the birth of their daughter.

"Not only is she incredible at what she does, this morning she made me macaroni and cheese because she heard me mention a wee craving yesterday", Ms Ardern posted. She says she will take six weeks of maternity leave, during which Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters will assume her duties.

"The baby was looking up at Jacinda and it looked like she was in awe of her and I couldn't get over how alert it was just after being born", she said. "Thank you so much for your best wishes and your kindness".

"We're all doing really well, thanks to the wonderful team at Auckland City Hospital", she said. Ardern has yet to announce the name of the child.

Ms Ardern, who refused to discuss plans for motherhood during the election campaign, waited until January to reveal on Facebook that she had conceived and was going to be "prime minister and a mum". (Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was the last to do so, in 1990.) Ardern was elected in October of previous year and announced that she was expecting in January.

Benazir had assumed the office a day after giving birth to Bakhtawar silencing her critics demanding an interim government and posing questions as to who would take over her position while she would be in the hospital. "But we know that that will happen to us for parenting as well", she told TVNZ. "This is a sign of our maturity as a country and its acceptance that combining career and family is a choice which women are free to make", said Clark, who has been a mentor to Ardern.

"I think it says something great about our country that we're all celebrating together this birth and that once again we're leading the world in showing that anything is possible".

Tributes have included one Google, which posted an image in the shape of a heart on its New Zealand homepage along with the message "Congratulations!" "I am not the first woman to multitask", Adern said in an interview with Radio New Zealand earlier in the year.

"It is a woman's decision about when they choose to have children and it should not predetermine whether or not they are given a job or have job opportunities", she said then.

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