After months of millions spent (approx 26 million), design applications, polls, and debates, the current flag will be kept, and Key has asked New Zealanders to get behind it. He said the matter would not be discussed again during his term in office.
The PM said: “It certainly won’t come back to Parliament while I’m the Prime Minister. I’m certainly not a fan of becoming a Republic, so that’s a decision for a future government to make.”
The referendum saw the current flag get more than 56 percent of the vote, pitted against a black flag with a silver fern on it, with a touch over two million people taking to the polls.
Key said, according to the New Zealand Herald: “You can’t shy away from a debate or a discussion about nationhood.
“We … as a country had a nationwide discussion about our flag, about nationhood, about what we stand for.
“And I think that’s been an important discussion we not only should have had, but must always have.
“I don’t think we should shy away from contentious issues just because they are by nature contentious.”
He added: “What this process has shown over the last three or four months is that we as a country can get out and fly our flag.
“We can use it, and we can show the world how proud we are of New Zealand.
“So my only request to New Zealanders now would be to rally behind the flag that’s been chosen by the majority of New Zealanders.
“To go out and use it, to wave it, to be proud of it, and to celebrate the fact that we’ve got an amazing country.”