New Zealand’s new Prime Minister, Bill English sworn in

Updated: 00:00 GMT, Jan 1, 1970 | Published: 05:06 GMT, Dec 12, 2016 |

Bill English, New Zealand Finance Minister,  was sworn in as the Prime Minister by Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy at a ceremony held at Government House in Wellington.

English was confirmed as the country’s new prime minister on Monday (Dec 12), as expected, a week after John Key announced his surprise resignation after eight years in the role.

English, who was the sole contender for the job, announced Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett as the deputy leader, following a special caucus meeting of the ruling centre-right National Party.

He has already lined up senior cabinet minister Steven Joyce, the minister for economic development, to replace him in the finance ministry.

He is expected to announce further cabinet changes in the coming weeks and has also signalled a “stocktake” on policy.

“Your excellency, thanks for your kind words and thank you for hosting us and our guests here today at this appointment ceremony. It is indeed a privilege to be appointed by you as Prime Minister, and I know I speak on behalf of the Deputy Prime Minister and myself, to reassure you that we take seriously the roles that you have conferred on us,” English, who comes from a conservative, Catholic family in New Zealand’s south, told the Governor-General at the ceremony.