Singapore's PM Lee congratulates New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern on daughter's birth

Singapore's PM Lee congratulates New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern on daughter's birth

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner Clarke Gayford have introduced the public to her daughter and revealed the newborn's name.

Ms Ardern and Mr Gayford let the nation know the news during a media conference at Auckland Hospital before noon.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Sunday she had named her new-born daughter Neve Te Aroha as she prepared to leave hospital amidst an outpouring of public excitement.

Te Aroha - a rural town in the Waikato region of Zew Zealand - was where Ardern's family was from, she explained.

"We chose Neve because we just liked it, and when we met her she just looked like she suited the name", she said.

"Also, it means - in various forms - it means bright and radiant, and snow which seemed like a good combination for Matariki (the Maori New Year) and for solstice".

In a cute touch, Ms Ardern thanked New Zealanders for their gifts, especially the hand-knitted ones.

For the next six weeks while she was off work Ardern said she and Gayford would do what every parent did and figure out things as they went.

Ardern became New Zealand's youngest prime minister when she took office through a coalition deal past year after an inconclusive election, and now became the first woman in the country's history to give birth while in office.

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

Prime Minister Ardern is the second world leader to give birth in office, and the first elected leader to take maternity leave.

Ardern said she was doing well but was "sleep-deprived".

"As equally special to us were just those people who took time to send a little note, or a blanket or a set of booties", Ms Ardern said.

"It was all a bit of a blur for the both of us but she had obviously been through so much and finally the moment arrived and she looked absolutely stunned and very happy", he said.

Then, Gayford will take care of the baby and will travel with Ardern between their Auckland home and the capital, Wellington, as well as on worldwide engagements.

Ardern has had little sleep over the past few days, with the baby also described as being "very alert and one hungry baby".

Ardern delivered her 3.31 kg (7.3 lb) daughter in the country's largest public hospital on Thursday afternoon with her partner, television presenter Clarke Gayford, at her side.

The plan was to go home and spend the next six weeks focusing on her family, says Ardern.

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