Victorian Premier Dan Andrews has mocked speculation that he might follow his West Australian counterpart Mark McGowan into retirement.
McGowan shocked the country on Monday when he suddenly quit politics, complaining that he was “exhausted”.
But Andrews, who has been Premier since December 2014 and is now eligible to have a statue built in his honour, insisted he was still full of energy and would serve his full term as Premier.
If he stays on in the job, he would become the second longest serving Victorian premier, behind only Sir Henry Bolte who held the top job for 17 years.
Andrews dismissed talk of his retirement as “gossip” that “should not be believed”.
He told reporters he was “all good” and enthused that there was “a lot to get on with”.
“These jobs are an amazing privilege. And there are no easy days in this job. That’s not a complaint. That’s just a fact,” he said.
“And so, it makes them so special. Because the work that you do impacts people in every corner of our state and if you’ve got a bit of ambition, then you can influence things well beyond your state.
“You can actually drive national reform.”
McGowan announced this week that he was quitting politics after 26 years in Parliament.
“The truth is I'm tired, extremely tired. In fact, I'm exhausted,” he said.
“The role of political leadership does not stop, it is relentless with huge responsibility, but it is all consuming, each and every day. And combined with the COVID-19 years, it has taken it out of me.”