NZ Prime Minister Ardern names new-born daughter Neve Te Aroha

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and partner Clarke Gayford with their newborn baby girl

Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford made her way down the Auckland Hospital corridor in her mother Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's arms, flanked by her exhausted but proud-looking father, Clarke Gayford.

The family took time to thank well wishers and share the name of their first child as they left Auckland City Hospital after the birth on Thursday at 4.45pm.

The baby's full name is Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern carries her newborn baby Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford as she walks out of the Auckland Hospital in New Zealand, June 24, 2018.

"But we chose Neve because we just liked it and when we met her we thought she looked like she suited the name".

The name, which has Irish origins, is traditionally spelt Niamh and variously means "bright", "radiant" and "snow", Ms Ardern said.

"Te Aroha was our way of reflecting the amount of love this baby has been shown even before she even arrived.it's also the place where all my family are from and I grew up under that mountain".

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.

She told media she was "sleep-deprived but doing well" and thanked the midwives, nurses, doctors, security and communications staff at Auckland hospital before addressing the nation.

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"And that it´s generally accepted, not just that women can make choices, but actually that men can too", Ardern added, referring to Gayford, who was standing beside her.

She added: "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 based on what they want and what makes them happy".

On Friday Ms Ardern became the New Zealand's first female leader to give birth while in power.

Ardern reflected on the first time she got to hold her newborn daughter, saying it happened to quickly but was "pretty special". Can you remember leaving hospital after giving birth?

As we head home we just wanted to say thanks, from the bottom of our hearts.

The baby was welcomed with congratulatory messages from world leaders and royals, including form the Queen and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, something Ms Ardern described as "mindblowing". She led the group for three months before being elected Prime Minister.

Gayford will be taking on the role of stay-at-home dad, when Ardern returns to work after six weeks of leave.

"She doesn't look like Jacinda as a baby because she's more tiny, more petite", Ardern's mother Laurell Ardern said.

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