A passionate group of volunteers from Kiwi Greens UK, the official London branch of NZ’s Green Party, joined the infamous Circle Line Pub Crawl, held annually on the Saturday after Waitangi Day, giving out stickers and milk bottle lollies in paper bags with the message ‘Vote for a sweeter Aotearoa this year’ branded on it.
Branch co-convener, Bryce Groves, said “This is one of the few times you can find a crowd in London and be sure they’re all New Zealanders. You can really sense a good-spirited patriotism – and of course see it too, with the brilliant costumes. In our experience, many kiwis living overseas miss that it’s even an election year, or don’t realise they can vote from over here. Our mission is to fix that, and help the Green party pick up an extra seat or two.”
Like previous years, Kiwi Greens UK didn’t see the slightest sign of antisocial behaviour, and the police were all smiles too. One officer was confronted by a fearsome solo haka, which turned into a hug and a hongi.
As well as the kiwi and K-bar costumes, there was a sense of satire with two blokes dressed as GCSB officers; one of whom confessed he had once been a National voter, but said “they’re the party that’s supposed to be all about finance and the economy, but they haven’t delivered.”
Kiwi Greens UK will be campaigning throughout 2014 to remind Kiwis living in the UK there’s an election coming up and to encourage them to vote for the Green party.
New Zealand’s general election will take place in the second half of 2014. Overseas kiwis can check their enrolment and/or register at www.elections.org.nz/enrolment
The London branch of the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand was set up in October 2007. It has a campagn team of volunteers, a growing social media reach. Go to kiwigreens.org.uk and facebook.com/KiwiGreensUK for more.
Watch the fun here: