9 Mar 2020

Andrew Coster named as New Zealand's new police commissioner

4:57 pm on 9 March 2020

Andrew Coster has been named as the new police commissioner by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Police Southern District Commander Andrew Coster.

Andrew Coster. Photo: RNZ / Ian Telfer

Coster will be appointed by the Governor-General for a five-year term from 3 April, taking over from Mike Bush.

Ardern said the former area commander in Auckland City Central and former district commander for the Southern Police District would lead his team of thousands of staff with "positivity, inclusion and integrity".

"I've had the opportunity to see him work on policy issues such as recent gun law reforms, but most of all I've observed his passion for a police force that knows its strength lies in what it can achieve with the community it serves," she said.

Coster says it was a huge honour to be selected for the role.

"I am proud to be an officer in the New Zealand police and I look forward to leading an organisation of 13,000 people who do incredible work to keep our communities safe.

"It's my intent to carry on a legacy of transformation focused on high performance that has been put in place under the leadership of Commissioner Bush."

Ardern thanked Bush for his six years in the role, particularly for his leadership during Christchurch mosque attacks last year - the "significant affront to the safety of New Zealanders that occurred on March 15".

Police Minister Stuart Nash said Coster - currently acting deputy commissioner, strategy and partnerships - was deserving of the new role.

"Andrew Coster has a strong history of accomplishments following his graduation from Police College in 1997, including serving in frontline and investigative roles in Counties Manukau and Auckland," Nash said.

Bush also welcomed the announcement.

"It has been my privilege to lead NZ Police for the past six years and I know that Andrew has the same passion and commitment to this organisation that I do.

"I am happy to be handing over the leadership to someone of Andrew's calibre."

Coster moved to Police National Headquarters in 2015 to take up the role of assistant commissioner, strategy and transformation. Before taking up his current role, he was acting deputy commissioner, resource management.

Other roles included acting as a solicitor in the office of the Crown Solicitor in Auckland, as well as being seconded as deputy chief executive at the Ministry of Justice.

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