(Update: adds official results, reaction quotes)
By Rocio Otoya
Sydney, Australia, Sep 17 (efe-epa).- New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s Labour Party secured a second term with a landslide victory in general elections on Saturday.
“New Zealand has shown the Labour Party its greatest support in almost 50 years,” she sai in a victory speech to euphoric supporters in Auckland.
The 40-year-old Labor Party leader secured an absolute majority in parliament and is unlikely to need to form alliances with rival groups, a feat that no political formation has achieved since 1996.
With almost all of the ballots counted, Labour has won 49 percent of the vote which translates into 64 seats.
The main opposition, center-right National Party, led by Judith Collins, took 27 percent and has admitted defeat.
Collins, whose party has changed leaders three times this year, congratulated Ardern for her “exceptional” results.
Ardern gained widespread public support for her quick and efficient management of the coronavirus pandemic and her response to a white supremacist terror attack on two mosques in Christchurch last year.
“We are living in an increasingly polarized world, a place where, more and more, people have lost the ability to see one another’s point of view,” she said.