Wellington: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Monday announced a delay in the general election by four weeks amid a surge in coronavirus cases.
The election was scheduled to take place on September 19.
Ardern, who is seeking re-election, has announced that now election would be held on October 17.
Announcing the decision, Ardern said the re-emergence of Covid-19 in the community was a cause for concern during the election period.
While the Electoral Commission said voting could safely happen under alert level 2, Ardern said she also had to factor in participation of voters, fairness and certainty.
New Zealand‘s government on Friday extended a lockdown of its largest city Auckland for another 12 days which is witnessing the rise in coronavirus cases.
On Sunday, 12 new cases were reported in the community, taking the caseload of active infection cases to 49.
This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.