Nikki Haley | AP
Washington: Nikki Haley will formally launch her 2024 presidential bid on Wednesday, casting herself as a younger, fresher alternative to her one-time boss and former US President Donald Trump.
Haley, 51, is the two-term Governor of South Carolina and the former US Ambassador to the United Nations. She released a video on Tuesday declaring her presidential candidacy.
Her formal declaration means she will be the first contender to join the contest against her former 76-year-old boss Trump, who announced his third bid for the White House late last year.
Before entering the presidential ballot, Haley has to win the Republican Party's presidential primary which will start in January next year. The next US presidential election is scheduled to be held on November 5, 2024.
In her video message on Tuesday she said: "I'm Nikki Haley, and I'm running for President”.
"It's time for a new generation of leadership – to rediscover fiscal responsibility, secure our border, and strengthen our country, our pride and our purpose. Some people look at America and see vulnerability. The socialist left sees an opportunity to rewrite history,” she said in the 3-minute 30 seconds video .
Identifying herself as a proud daughter of Indian immigrants, Haley talked about growing up in Bamberg, South Carolina and how it shaped her belief in a strong and proud America.
Born Nimrata Nikki Randhawa to immigrant Punjabi Sikh parents, Haley is the third Indian-American to run for the US presidency in three consecutive election cycles. Bobby Jindal ran in 2016 and Vice President Kamala Harris in 2020.
Haley is the second woman of colour to ever seek the Republican Party's nomination for the White House. The first was Angel Joy Chavis Rocker, a school counsellor from Florida, who entered the 2000 presidential race, becoming the first African-American to do so.
Haley's formal announcement will come weeks after she tweeted on February 1: "My family and I have a big announcement to share with you on February 15th! And yes, it's definitely going to be a Great Day in South Carolina!"
Haley was born to Sikh parents Ajit Singh Randhawa and Raj Kaur Randhawa, who had emigrated from Punjab to Canada and then to the US in the 1960s.
At 39, she was the youngest governor in the US when she took office in January 2011, and made history as South Carolina's first female governor. She was also the state's first Indian-American governor and would go on to serve for two terms.
From January 2017 to December 2018, she served as the 29th US ambassador to the United Nations. PTI