New Zealand has voted to keep their current flag, featuring the Union Jack of the United Kingdom.
In a second flag referendum, the current design won the majority with 56.6% of the vote, against the chosen blue, black and white version, seen below.
Other proposed flags had been whittled down to one contender for the new design, all of which featured the New Zealand fern. These designs lost with 43.2%.
2.1 millions New Zelanders voted in the referendum, a 67% turn out.
The issue with the current flag lay in that the flag of the UK formed part of the NZ flag, due to the former Empire and colonisation of the islands. Some felt the flag did not represent the people, instead an annex of Britian.
Prime Minister John Key told the people following the decision: “Use it, embrace it and, more importantly, be proud of it.”
He was however, a supporter of a new flag and was disappointed with the flag result but respected the decision of the people. Key said that the National Government will not revisit the issue under his leadership.
Deputy PM Bill English also agreed: “We should all embrace that decision.”