WELLINGTON | The conservative opposition in new zealand has changed the leadership Friday in the hope of countering the popularity record which has the first minister Jacinda Ardern, strong of its success in the fight against the sars coronavirus.
The members of the national Party have dropped their leader Simon Bridges after the publication of surveys of its defeat in the legislative elections in September.
His replacement is a former part of the agro-industrial sector, Todd Muller, who will have less than four months to lead his party to victory.
Mr. Muller, age 51, has explained that his goal is to help the new zealand economy to recover from the consequences of the outbreak of coronavirus.
“New Zealanders need a government of national Party that has the necessary experience and skills in terms of management to enable our country to get out of the worst crisis since the end of the Second world War,” he said in a press release.
In recent weeks, Mr. Bridges, a former prosecutor, has been accused of failing to adopt the right tone with the population by addressing the way in which the government of Ms Ardern has managed the fight against the sars coronavirus.
His ouster comes after two polls this week, showing that his party is at its lowest for almost two decades.
Mr. Muller, who had started his political career as a collaborator of the former Prime minister Jim Bolger, seen as more centrist and pragmatic than Mr. Bridges.
According to a poll by the One News-Colmar Brunton released on Thursday evening, the support of the labour party of Mrs Ardern has increased 18 percentage points to 59 %, a record for the centre-left.
Monday, a survey Newshub-Reid Research had pointed to the great popularity enjoyed by the first minister, in particular concerning the fight against the COVID-19, which is supported by 91.6% of respondents.
Ms Ardern, 39 years old, has put in place measures for containment are very strict for seven weeks. They have started to be lifted last week, the epidemic seemingly under control.
The archipelago, which has five million inhabitants, there has been 21 deaths related to the COVID-19.