WELLINGTON, 5th December, 2016 (WAM) — John Key, Prime Minister of New Zealand, abruptly announced his resignation today.

According to a press statement, he said that it is the time to retire from politics after having been in power for more than eight years, pointing out that he has no immediate plans for the future.

Mr. Key added that he will stay at the parliament until the conduction of a by-election to fill his seat.

His resignation will be effective from 12th December, when National MPs will meet to select a new leader.