Fifth Flag Bill Passes

by Desk Editor on Thursday, September 24, 2015 — 11:50 AM

The New Zealand Flag Referendums Amendment Bill has passed its third reading.

The bill drafted by Green MP Gareth Hughes was adopted by the Government and introduced under Urgency on Wednesday night. It has the intent of allowing a fifth option to be included in the upcoming referendum, so the “Red Peak” flag could be included

Labour criticised the bill for not including a yes/no option for change in the first referendum. They also said it was technically possible for the Government to now insert any five flag options of it choice.

Last night the debate became heated particularly when NZ First MPs said the “Red Peak” flag had links to Nazi symbolism. They oppose any referendum being held on changing the flag.

Both parties criticised the process as “shambolic”.

Government MPs accused Labour and NZ First of wasting the House’s time through filibustering as the public wanted the choices in the referendum expanded.

The Bill completed its third reading by 109 to 12 with NZ First opposed.

MPs then began the third reading debate of the Environmental Reporting Bill.

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