Key: Flag meeting 'isn't going anywhere'

  • 21/09/2015
John Key (Simon Wong/3 News)
John Key (Simon Wong/3 News)

There doesn't appear to be any prospect of a meeting between Prime Minister John Key and Labour leader Andrew Little to discuss the flag referendum.

"I don't think it's really going anywhere at the moment," Mr Key told reporters today.

Both of them last week said they were prepared to meet to discuss the possibility of adding an alternative design to the four selected by the Flag Consideration Panel.

That was after a surge of support for the Red Peak flag, a design which wasn't chosen for the shortlist.

But Mr Little, although offering a meeting with no preconditions, wanted to discuss putting a question into the referendum that would ask voters whether they wanted to change the flag.

Mr Key didn't accept that, and maintained his position that Labour would have to agree to support the referendum process.

The situation hasn't changed.

"If other parties were serious about including another flag, I said it would require them to play ball - and that's where it's falling down," Mr Key said at his post-cabinet press conference.

He's unfazed by the latest poll result which shows most Kiwis don't want a new flag.

The latest 3News-Reid Research poll at the weekend found 69 percent of those favoured want to keep the current flag, now that they've seen the final four alternatives.

Support for change sits at 25 percent, while six percent don't know.

"You won't really know how it's going to play out until you get the contender up against the current flag," Mr Key said.

"We're going through the process and yes, it's a challenge. But challenges are there to be met."