Sweden's parliament voted to confirm Social Democrat leader Magdalena Andersson as the country's first ever woman prime minister, ending weeks of uncertainty about who would lead the country.
Sweden's parliament has elected Magdalena Andersson as the country's first woman prime minister.
The election on Wednesday came hours after the 54-year-old clinched a last-minute deal securing key support.
A total of 117 members of parliament voted for her, while 57 abstained and 174 voted against.
Under Sweden's system, a prime ministerial candidate does not need the support of a majority in parliament, they just need to not have a majority against them.
The current Finance Minister Andersson reached a deal with the Left Party late on Tuesday to raise pensions in exchange for its backing in Wednesday's vote in parliament.
"We have reached an agreement to strengthen the finances of the poorest pensioners," Andersson told public broadcaster SVT minutes after the deal was announced. The 54-year-old took over as leader of the Social Democrats earlier this month.
Sweden just made history by electing Magdalena Andersson as its first female PM. Sweden is the last Nordic country to do so. Iceland's Vigdís Finnbogadóttir became world's first female president in 1980. In 1981, Norway got GH Brundtland as the Nordic region's first female PM. pic.twitter.com/h60pvrhqD8— Ashok Swain (@ashoswai) November 24, 2021
Andersson will formally take over her functions following a meeting with King Carl XVI Gustaf on Friday.
She will replace Stefan Lofven, who resigned on November 10 after seven years as prime minister in a widely expected move aimed at giving his successor time to prepare for the country's September 2022 general election.
Despite being a nation that has long championed gender equality, Sweden has never had a woman as prime minister.
All other Nordic countries — Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland — have seen women lead their governments.
It is a historic day in #Sweden! The parliament has just voted in Sweden’s first female Prime Minister! Magdalena Andersson of the Social Democratic Party 🌹🙌🏽@socialdemokrat pic.twitter.com/cGKvLqQ71K— Dima Sarsour (@SarsourDima) November 24, 2021
Andersson, a former junior swimming champion often described as "pragmatic" and a "technocratic bureaucrat", outlined three political priorities going forward.
She said she wanted to "take back democratic control of schools, healthcare and elderly care", and move away from welfare sector privatisation.
She also said she aimed to make Sweden a worldwide role model in climate transition.
And she vowed to end the segregation, shootings and bombings that have plagued the country in recent years, usually due to rival gangs settling scores or organised crime battling over the drug market.